SEP UK just celebrated its 50th year. The majority of those years were held in a sheep field on the bonny, bonny banks of Loch Lomond in Scotland. Some may say why have it here when the weather is often wet, the field muddy and the midges hungry? The beauty that points to God is one reason—it is a spectacularly beautiful location. Another reason is that it is remote and gets you away from the pulls of everyday life like TV and school and work so that you can focus on relationships and worship God. Another reason is the opportunity to experience Christian community in action—learning how to handle adversity to grow in Christian character. Another is the opportunity to try new things and learn new skills. SEP is one of the Churches outreach programmes that touches the lives of young people, it changes them and gives them new strengths and confidence, and hopefully stronger faith in God. Whatever their reasons, 50 years show us that people gain from and enjoy the SEP experience and keep coming back for more!

This year the first week contained a number of problems—besides the wet and muddy weather, we had to tackle an issue with electricity, water supply and then a few cases of tummy bug, which unfortunately meant that the Saturday celebrations of the 50th Anniversary had to be postponed until Sunday, which was our normal scheduled visitors day .Our dedicated volunteer crew work day and night to overcome any problems if necessary and we appreciate water and light all the more afterwards! None of the 100 plus staff get paid, including Camp Director, Jackie Mill and her Husband, Pete, who is the Camp Chaplain. They all provide a wonderful service and contribute to the outreach aspect of camp with their brilliant Christian examples. The children of staff under the age of 11 are looked after in ‘Mini-Camp’ and Creche. Staff are extremely important and valued, and none more so that the ‘Dorm Leaders’ who have the care of 12-15 campers 24/7—the hardest job on camp! Another essential job for SEP to run is that of Kitchen Supervisor and Chef. At the moment we desperately need someone to volunteer for this job in order for SEP 2018 to operate. If you think you or someone you know might be qualified and willing to do this vital job, who would like the opportunity and challenge of serving and giving of their time and skills, please encourage them to consider what an impact SEP has on so many lives and email admin@sepuk.org Our theme this year was ‘We love because he first loved us’ and SEP is indeed a work and true expression of LOVE!

Camper activities include Archery, Art, Canoeing, Ceilidh, Christian-Living Class, Code-Breaking, Cycling, Cheesy Disco, a Film night, Fitness, Football, Hill-Walking, ITC (Initiative Training course), Leatherwork, Netball, Salsa Dancing, Sailing, Singalong, Talent Show, Team Building and Volleyball. There are awards at the end of each week, and at the end of camp, for dorms and campers, as well as Staff Awards.

This is truly a Christian Camp and besides the Christian Living Classes, each dorm takes a turn at leading a Morning Worship Service. It is safe to say that the majority of the 250 or so people, young and old, who come to SEP go away changed in many ways. The beauty and community of SEP is conducive to people seeing God in their lives and making the personal commitment expressed in baptism, and every year there are a few baptisms in the Loch. SEP is truly a blessed place and a blessing to so very many.

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