The TFP Call to Chivalry Camp 2016 wound up its final camp in California. The theme, Catholic Spain, was the same as with the other sites in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Louisiana, but the location and the road trip were entirely unique.
The camp began with a road trip starting from Pennsylvania with only a few participants and picking up more boys along the way. The trans-national trip included skeet shooting in Kansas and and a pilgrimage in Colorado to the shrine of the first American canonized as a saint, Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini. Participants also climbed the sometimes dangerous trail of Angels Landing in ZionNational Park inUtah, and traveled to Death Valley, the lowest point in North America at 282 feet below sea level and one of the hottest spots in the United States.
At the end of the journey, a five-day camp in the beautiful Sequoia National Park awaited the boys. The camp ran from August 1st to August 7th. The talks were inspirational. The games were competitive. The campfire stories were lively. The solemn rosaries and vigil before a relic of the True Cross were reverent. It was truly a Catholic environment full of Californian friendliness.
One of the more unique events was the hike to see the giant Sequoias. The boys paraded along a trail through the largest trees in the world. When you walk in front of a giant sequoia, your sense of “largeness” shifts fundamentally. The moniker, “giant,” was not given lightly. Some of the Sequoias have been around for several thousand years, many ofthem perhaps were alive at the very time Our Lord Jesus Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary walked the Earth.
Many camp participants spent part ofthe night simply marveling at the stars above them. Being over 7,000 feet above sea level, the camp was above the haze of the atmosphere, the pollution and even most of the clouds. It was arguably one of the most stunning displays of the galaxy from Earth, especially since the only source of electricity in the camp, a generator, was shut down at night,throwing the camp into complete darkness. The Heavens truly proclaim the glories of God.
Another unique (extra-official) event of the camp was the polar dips in the morning. Nothing like jumping in the pool on a mountain-cold morning to start the day.
After the camp, many participants camped out for two nights near Yosemite National Park and visited famous sites like The Bridal Falls, El Capitan, and Half Dome. The hike up Cloud’s Rest rewarded the hikers with a commanding 360-degree view of the whole Yosemite Valley thousands of feet up in the air.
The return road trip was just as epic, hiking around Arches National Park and visiting the miraculous Saint Joseph’s staircase in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Finally, we participated in the protest against the satanic black mass in Oklahoma City. Defending the honor of Jesus and Mary was a “grand finale” to end a very adventurous road trip and camp.
As Caleb, one of the participants, put it, “This was a great road trip! I’m definitely doing this again next year.”
For moreinformationontheCall toChivalry Boys Summer camps,please visit: www.TFPStudentAction.org.