On Sunday July 23rd, the Servants Sisters of the communities of Lumezzane (Brescia) and Brignano (Bergamo), went on a bus with a group of 50 girls and chaperones towards Collio Val Trompia, a mountain village in the province of Brescia. The spectacular scenery that accompanied us all week helped us to raise the spirit and detoxify us from the superficialities of the world.
The theme this year, as in the rest of the camps of the Home of the Mother, was 'The Joy of Living'. All the activities - games, songs, reflections, points of medication, workshops, and even mountain and river tours – revolved around the discovery of the true joy of life.
The saints who accompanied us during the camp were St. Philip Neri and Sister Clare. Every day we had a 'shout' in the camp, that is, a phrase from one of them that we repeated throughout the day that helped us fight to live the day better. Some of the phrases were 'All or Nothing!', 'Ad maiora natus sum' (I was born for greater things), or 'I prefer Paradise'. We also gave away two special prizes each day: the Sister Clare Award for the most cheerful team and the 'Madonna dei Campi Estivi' ('Our Lady of the Camps') award, for the team that distinguished itself by living better the virtue that we all tried to work toward that day (order, obedience, etc.).
The three main songs of our camp were 'The song of Hope', that speaks of the joy of believing in the eternal life of Heaven; 'I Prefer Paradise', composed and sung by Sister Clare, and 'All the people said Amen', by the American artist Matt Maher, which was one of the last songs that Sister Clare and the girls sang before the earthquake happened in which they died.
On one night, we had a 'serious' camp fire, a Holy Hour. Each girl was able to approach Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament to offer a personal prayer in silence. There was a real atmosphere of prayer. One of the participating girls said that when she was there with Jesus, she asked for the strength to suffer for her family, as did Saint Jacinta of Fatima. She said 'I am afraid, but I want to do it’.
For all this, we give thanks to Heaven. We also thank the girls, who really tried to live it with joy; it was very noticeable that true joy reigned in the camp. We saw in many of the girls a change of attitude throughout the week. Blessed be God!
We hope that they all continue with their commitments and that, throughout the course of the next year, they do not lose everything that they have received.