References

PRIESTS:

“CYSC is the Catholic faith come alive in the most phenomenal way.” – Don Franks (Pastor, St. Anne, Dresden)

“Catholic Youth Summer Camp gets our parish youth excited about their relationship with Christ. They come home from Camp and they want to continue that relationship throughout the year in our Parish. I highly recommend this camp to any parent who wishes to provide an experience and opportunity for their teen to draw closer to Christ in the Catholic tradition. It is totally Catholic and as our teens would say, totally ‘cool’. – David Sizemore (Pastor, St. John Newman)

“Having assisted with CYSC for two years, this is the best organized Catholic summer outing and I would recommend to any pastor or youth minister the programs sponsored by CYSC for our young people. The kids have an opportunity to grow in their Catholic faith while making new friends. I encourage our seminarians to be involved with CYSC to be involved with evangelization. CYSC has been a tremendous example of the new evangelization that Pope Benedict XVI has promoted as an essential aspect of the Church’s mission. I have seen first-hand the ways in which young people’s faith has been nurtured through CYSC. Today, maybe more than ever, the faith of young people is being challenged by secularism. CYSC provides a significant response to these threats with an environment of prayer, spiritual growth, cultivation of good friendships, and a way to have good, clean fun. I whole-heartedly support the efforts of CYSC.” – James Wehner (Rector, Notre Dame Seminary)

YOUTH MINISTERS:

“The youth that I have sent to CYSC have come back with a deep love for the Sacraments, a greater ability to verbalize their faith in Jesus, and an evangelistic spirit that has assisted in a spiritual renewal in our parish. Their deepened love for Jesus has made their peers wants this kind of faith in their own lives.” – Megan Thompson (Youth Minister, Scioto County, OH)

“Our teens attended CYSC last year with our CORE members and built bonds that week that carried over into our youth ministry all year at our parish. Not only are they dedicated to attending youth group, they are leaders when they are there and are willing to reach out and invite others to come. They have learned to live their faith in every walk of life and know they can find fellowship, forgiveness and Christ in the Church. Our teens and CORE members can’t wait for camp this year.” – Tina Burtch (Youth Minister, St. John Neumann)

“God has given me the great gift of being with and loving inner city children – and teaching them about the one thing that matters: eternal life. Some of those children were able to spend a week submerged in Catholic culture: the beauty, goodness, challenge and adventure of it. They were cared for and befriended by CYSC counselors and staff members, campers and most of all, priests. They came back leaps and bounds ahead of where they would be if they didn’t have that opportunity.” – Rachel Muha (Run the Race, inner city ministry)

“Catholic Youth Summer Camp is one of the best programs going. Many of our leaders are being formed by this group and we stand to benefit from them in the near future.” – Mike Barone (St. Joan of Arc Parish)

SCHOOL REPRESENTATIVES:

“Catholic School curricula intend to impart vital Christian knowledge. But to fulfill the evangelical imperative we also encourage the students’ personal encounter with the living Lord Jesus Christ. CYSC offers just this opportunity! At summer camp today’s young Catholic students experience the exciting reality of a LIVING faith.” – John Reade (Fisher Catholic High School, Chaplain)

PARENTS:

“We send our children to Catholic Youth Summer Camp because we wanted a camp that spoke to our children on many levels. CYSC is a camp where our children have fun, meet new friends who, and grow in their faith. Growing in your own faith is a process and CYSC emphasizes the Catholic “tools” needed to move that process along. It’s been very reassuring for our kids to see others interested in their Catholic faith.” – Nancy Drought

“My wife and I so thankful for the amazing ministry of CYSC! Our two younger daughters have been a part of CYSC for the last several years and they have received so much. Their faith formation has been deepened; their love of the Sacraments and Eucharistic Adoration; their desire to live their faith in all aspects of their lives – all of this is the spiritual “fruit” that we see so evident in each of them. The CYSC staff’s ability to share the fun and joy of our Catholic faith inspires all of us – parents and young people.” – Matt Palmer

“We have been raising four children for the last 22 years. They all have attended or are currently attending Catholic Schools for their primary and secondary educations. Three of our four children have attended CYSC. It took a little coaxing to get them there at first, but it has been well worth it. I feel they learned about their faith in Catholic school, but they grew in their faith and in their personal relationship with Christ at CYSC. They would come home from camp more on fire for their faith than at any other time in all their years of school. Not only would they tell us about the great times they had with all the fun activities and meeting new friends from around the diocese, but they would come home and put on Christian music to listen to or make a point of attending daily mass sometimes on their own. As a result of their love of this camp, last summer I had one of my children serve on staff, one serve as a counselor and one attend as a camper. I highly recommend this camp to any family.” – Janet Jenkins

“My son attended CYSC for the first time last summer and he cannot wait to go this upcoming summer! There were so many highlights from his week, but he especially loved daily mass and prayers, bonding with his counselor and camp group, Eucharistic Adoration, the praise and worship singing, and all the fun-filled activities he participated in. He also liked meeting new people and listening to other kids’ testimonials about their faith. The activities and fun were endless and my son wasn’t ready to come home! With all the camps that are available to our children in the summer, we are blessed to have CYSC to reinforce the fact that you can have a fun and memorable week away from home while living your faith daily. My son walked away from this camp with a renewed closeness to God, new friendships, and an interest in becoming a CYSC camp counselor in the future! We are thankful to the CYSC staff and counselors for all they have done to inspire the children of Central Ohio.” – Lyssa Brown

“As a parent of two children that have attended CYSC I wish to pass on our family’s experience of camp: Our children were heartily welcomed by the staff with smiles and thematic costumes, and introduced to smiling, helpful staff and religious. The counselors took the kids under their wings, and remained supportive and caring throughout the week. Campers experienced quiet moments of contemplation and prayer, mixed in with skits, concerts, team building games and fun, fun, fun. The cabin mates grew close as the week unfolded, sharing their faith experiences and leisure activities, alike. Where else can you go to mass in the morning, and jet ski or play paint ball in the afternoon? …or soak a priest and receive confession, in a day? …watch silly skits and tear up at a witness of a friend’s conversion? During the ride home, the outpouring of excitement for their faith, enthusiasm for youth group, desire for maintaining connections with counselors and new friends was music to my soul, and reassurances that there is hope for our world. – Sandy Joseph

CAMPERS:

“My sister had gone to CYSC before, so I thought I knew what to expect. I expected to love the activities and enjoy, but not really look forward to, Mass and club. I was so wrong. The Holy Spirit came into my heart that year and started a work that has been going on ever since. He has completely changed who I am. I didn’t realize how much I’ve changed until this past year when I was a counselor. I got to see a group of rowdy boys go from not wanting anything to do with Mass and the Church to giving their lives over to Jesus and to His mission. I realized that when I was in sixth grade, I was exactly how they were at the beginning of the week. Then I saw where I am now in my faith, and I could not believe how much God had done in my life. He used CYSC as an instrument to transform my entire being.” – Jacob Ritchey (11th grade, Watterson)

“Before coming to Catholic Youth Summer Camp three years ago, I didn’t know the Lord. I didn’t realize it, but I was struggling in my faith life because I had never paid any attention to it! Before going, I was pretty sure that all the high energy activities would be fun, but thought that daily Mass would surely kill me. But when I got to camp, I ended up having one of the greatest experiences of my life-only topped by some of my other years at CYSC and youth group events that I have gotten involved in because of CYSC. Every year that I have gone back, I have gotten more and more out of it, and have become better equipped to love God with everything I have. At CYSC, there was everything necessary to bring me to a closer relationship with God-from confessions, to testimonies to praise and worship. I was brought so much happiness and goodness from my experiences. It inspired me to continue my faith outside of camp, no matter where I am and got me involved in my parish’s amazing youth group. The staff members and my counselors at camp have become my role models. Looking back on it, I can definitely see God’s work in my life, guiding me through my problems. . CYSC made me really examine my life and change the things that were getting in the way of my relationship with God. I honestly do not know where or who I would be, if it weren’t for my encounters with God through Catholic Youth Summer Camp.” – Liza Goedde (9th grade, Watterson)

“Before going to CYSC, I had totally lost the light of Christ. I wasn’t praying daily or living out my holistic faith. To be honest, I really didn’t care about my faith. When I attended the first club night at CYSC, that all totally changed. God flooded my heart with his and set me on fire for Christ. That started my amazing week at CYSC. That first day I also remember something very important that the Priest doing the Mass said. He said “if you don’t give anything into the Mass, then you won’t get anything out of it.” That was totally true for me. I took that to heart and really tried giving myself to Jesus at the Masses that week. Each night at club, the music really moved me close to God. I also loved the adoration and confession. One day, I really felt God telling me to make a good confession. Then I heard that we would have the opportunity of going to confession in two days. I even experienced the laughter and joy that God gives through all the amazing high- adventure activities. I can’t even express how much camp impacted me, but all I can say is that it was the best week of my entire year.” – Nina Buoni (7th grade, St. Andrew)

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