Staff

June 13, 2015 – Staff Training

With our two week staff training finished, CPBC’s summer staff is trained and ready for campers. Bring on the summer!


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Rev. Bill Fish’s 25 Year Ministry at CP Draws to a Close

With faith, hope, and love Covenant Point Bible Camp wishes to announce the resignation of Rev. Bill Fish as Associate Director – after 25 years of strong ministry leadership at CPBC.  Please read the following letter from Bill:

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12/29/13

Dear Friends,

In February of 1989 Lynn and I began a fabulous adventure in the Northwoods at Covenant Point.  Never realizing it would be our lives work, we joined Chuck and Jane Frasier in the task of advancing a year round ministry to children and adults at Covenant Point Bible Camp.  There were many great challenges and many wonderful successes and the blessing of being privileged to see thousands of lives changed for Christ and by Christ.

I thank God for the many people who supported us over the years and joined us in our endeavors.  I think of staff who worked sacrificially long hours and parents who trusted us with their precious children, strangers who became friends and friends who became partners in ministry.

It has been a great work and the love of my life but for everything there is a season and my time at Covenant Point is now complete.  As of January 15, 2014 I will be resigning my position as Associate Director.

My hope and prayer is that Covenant Point will continue to prosper, advancing the cause of the Good News of God’s love for us all in Christ Jesus.  I am confident that it will be so and God’s blessing will be an abundant one.

Please pray for Lynn and me as we spend these next months waiting on God’s guidance and call to our next adventure.

Your Partner in Ministry,

Bill Fish

Countless lives have been influenced for Christ because of Bill’s passion for seeing young people encouraged in their next step of faith through an experience at camp.  During this time of transition, we are extending a call to all those who represent the Covenant Point community, to join us in offering to Bill reflections on his influence in our lives, and gratitude for his friendship and service at Covenant Point.  Please send your favorite “Bill stories,” reflections, photos, and notes of appreciation or affirmation to cpbc@cpbc.com or to 358 W. Hagerman Lake Road, Iron River, MI 49935.  Your prompt reply is appreciated, as we hope to compile what we receive in the next few weeks. 


Covenant Point Welcomes New Staff

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Covenant Point Bible Camp is pleased to announce that Teri Sherwood has been selected to fill the position of Head Cook and Housekeeping Coordinator.  A former Head Cook at CPBC, Teri returns to the staff after eight years working full time in administrative and food service fields.  “The sharing of good food around the table is such an important and valued part of the Covenant Point experience, for campers of any age,” said Erik Strom, Covenant Point Executive Director.  “I’m excited to watch how Teri will bring her skills, passion, and experience to this dearly-loved area of our ministry, and help us not only continue a great tradition of excellent meals at Covenant Point, but grow in our ability to serve our campers and equip our staff really well.”

betsyCovenant Point Bible Camp is also pleased to announce that Betsy Stegbauer has been selected to fill the position of Office Manager.  Previously NorthSTAR Health System’s Director of Clinic and Ambulatory Services, Betsy brings vast administrative skills and experience to Covenant Point’s office environment. “Betsy has been a faithful and important volunteer at Covenant Point, especially as a camp nurse, training our staff and helping campers feel comfortable and safe here for many years,” said Strom.  “Her skills as an RN will continue to serve us, and Betsy’s leadership of our administrative systems and structures will be a new and exciting avenue for her many gifts.”

 

Teri and Betsy will begin their new responsibilities in late December and early January, respectively. Please join us in welcoming these friends to the Covenant Point team! Thanks be to God!


Joy Merritt Strom

Covenant Point has a new baby on staff!

On November 6, 2014 at 3:52 pm, Erik and Courtney, along with big brothers Caleb, Jackson, and Emmett, welcomed Joy Merritt Strom to the family.  Joy arrived weighing 7lbs 3oz and was 18.5 inches.  The Stroms are all doing well and love having a girl in the family!

 

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2013 CPBC Triathlon August 4

Enjoy the photos from the Triathlon 2013, a wonderful success in regard to  raising funds for special needs programs at camp and for those who participated and those who cheered them on.  There were 17 solo competitors and 7 teams.  At the present time $10,000 has been raised with more to come!!!! The winner for the third year in a row was David Haller, who conquered the course in 2:17:08. Jack Hudson became the oldest to complete the full marathon at the age of 63, finishing in 3 hours and 25 minutes.  The day began chilly which made for a cold 1/2 mile swim at the beginning but warmed up to comfortable temperatures when the biking and running unfolded. There was also 6 walkers and one baby who participated in the 6.3 mile trek. This annual event has been on tap for 14 years now and is a great way to spend a weekend at Point.

A portion of funding from previous triathlons was used to offset registration fees for the new Autism Spectrum Camp for families who have children with autism. (blog entry to follow).  Monies are also used to provide assistance and support for campers with special needs who attend Covenant Point during the summer.

 


Venture Out Women’s Back Pack Trip 2013

Away we went on an 18 mile walk in the woods and along the waters of Lake Superior at majestic and scenic Pictured Rocks National Shoreline near Munising, MI. This year six women participated–yearly returnees were Julie Bladel and Linda Johnson, second time attender, Sarah Hillabrand,  first timer, Joan Fisher, and leaders from Point, Jane Frasier and Megan Nyberg. Despite rain trying to dampen the spirits at various times and cold nights which reduced the bug population, everyone enjoyed the time together and delighted in being a part of this back country area. Meeting a variety of folks on the trail added to the adventure–even the group we had to yell at one night for making too much noise after midnight.  Each person especially commented on the devotional times with Megan who shared thoughts on spiritual disciplines. The discussion and prayer time that followed was a blessing as was the time of reflection on the trail or at each night’s camp site.The purpose of Venture Out is to experience time away with a group of women and leave behind the clutter of our daily lives. We all did just that!


Enjoying “Joia” as a Staff, Preparing for Summer

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There are often times in the life of a camp staff when strategy meetings need moments of great JOIA. So it happened one afternoon when the long winter doldrums were getting to everyone.  To add spice and flavor to our time, former Point and Harbor staff person, Carleton Johnson, shared with us a sampling of a product he is marketing. Carleton and  another associate started a business called Boundary Waters Brands selling a beverage named JOIA, a blend of three ingredients, a fruit, a flower, and a spice.  Two examples of this refreshing all natural soda are:  Blackberry/pomegranate/ginger or Lime/hibiscus/cloves.  There are six varieties in all.   The business which began in Minneapolis,  has since arrived in other locations of the country like Seattle, Los Angelas, Portland, Denver, and Chicago area.  To read more about JOIA, an informative website can be found at www.joialife.com. As for Point staff, we lift a bottle of JOIA to you, Carleton, for doing just that in our small little U.P. world. Blessings to your growth.


Blessed with a Committed Summer Staff

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This summer, we have a staff of 32 fantastic young leaders on board to serve at Covenant Point. Many of these counselors, program directors, waterfront staff, and trips guides are choosing to say “no” to internships or more income at a job back home in order to lead and grow at camp.  The value of serving in a camp setting is something that generations of staff members have known for a long time, and it was affirming to read more about this benefit over “summer internships” in the New York Times:

 “[In encouraging my daughter to seek a summer internship] I forced myself to parrot conventional wisdom because there was at least a chance that it was true.  But the clinching argument came from my daughter’s impassioned defense of camp counselors, and her outrage that someone glancing at résumés would believe that a 20-year-old [intern] who fetches coffee at Google is more impressive than one who spends days and nights nurturing, teaching, organizing, comforting and inspiring.”
Dan Flescher, New York Times Blog  Find the Full Article Here

Karl, Excited

To be entrusted with the lives of children, to learn how to  function as part of a dynamic and complex community, and to improvise as a leader carrying out our mission as each day unfolds: these are experiences that foster immeasurable growth of all kinds! If you’ve chosen to work at camp at some point in your life, I bet you know what I mean. Thank you for prayerfully supporting this summer’s team of staff members, and their choice to participate in the vital work at Covenant Point.

-Erik Strom,
Camp Director

 


New Wishlist Donations!

We continue to be overwhelmed and excited by the generosity of people giving through our Wishlist Donation page.  In the last month we have received gifts of: a bench grinder, chain puller, extension cords, many kitchen goodies(food processor, a NICE knife, spatulas, etc), new archery equipment(Bows, and armguards), and a CHICKEN SUIT (something that will come in very handy in skits this summer)!

Thanks to all who gave.  Stay updated on our lastest dreams and wishes at the Donation Wishlist. We are always thinking and dreaming of new things that could be useful/updated in the ministry of camp and it is through the donation of things small and large through the wishlist that we are able to expand our effectiveness in hosting, caring, and programming for people to come and experience new life in Christ and be encouraged in their next step of faith.  

Enjoy the photos! 


Summer 2013 Trailers

Check out our new promotional videos for this summer, made by our Outreach and I.T Director, Colby Mecher.

Learn more about Summer Camp Here

Learn more about Wilderness Trips and Island Camps

Learn more about Sojourners: Senior High Week


Purdue Office Renovation, and Wish List Fulfillments

Despite the light dusting of snow we received two days ago, spring is in the air at camp, and summer camp is right around the corner!  We recently received a new Jetboil camp stove, yet another need fulfilled from our Wish List page.  Check out the various needs that our staff have compiled and please give as you are led; it brings us great joy to see gifts arrive in the mail as you can tell by our excited staff members!

Preparations for summer camp are underway, and over 70 Forestry, Wildlife, and Fishery students from Purdue University will be arriving in just over two weeks for their 5 week  practical course.  This year we have been hard at work preparing a brand new office space in the basement of our infirmary, complete with new wireless internet access, and private office space for the Teachers Aides and Professors to do grading, and tutoring.  Mike Johnson from Grace Covenant Church in Iron River volunteered many hours in helping us with this project.  We are very grateful for his help and expertise!

Hardwood flooring has been laid on the first floor of the new directors home, doors have been hung, and appliances have been ordered.  The home is being built as one part of our current Next Step of Faith Campaign, which seeks to endow our internship program with $300,000, and raise another $300,000 to build an onsite directors home to continue the legacy and commitment to long term leadership of former director Chuck Frasier, who passed away suddenly in November of 2010.  Learn more about the campaign, and get involved today.


The Earth Ball Lives!

Our earth ball was in sad shape three weeks ago . . . but not any more!  Time-worn and well-used, the earth ball has been a valuable asset to the Mainland for many years, but the time finally came for a new inflatable bladder.  We posted about this need on our “program wish list” page, a place where we post needs for our program, operations, and information about scholarship donations. Within a few weeks, a friend of covenant point donated the $160 to purchase the new bladder and today we blew it up for the first time and had a celebration!

This donation is a beautiful example of the many ways that we are indelibly linked to those who support us through praying for the ministry, telling families and students about camp, or donating funds for projects.   There are many ways to get involved.  We are currently 75% of the way to completing the Next Step of Faith Campaign, and there are resources around our site to learn more about our Wishlist, or how to Become a “Friend of Covenant Point” 

Thanks for your support!


Former NOLS Field Guide Trains Point Staff

Kevin Bergstrom, staff alum (crew, counselor, trips director) and former National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) field guide and a NOLS Rocky Mountain Assistant Director, spent two days with us this past weekend providing supplemental trips training for our trips staff who will be leading Canoe, and Backpacking Trips this summer. Covering a range of topics like wilderness risk management, outdoor leadership, orienteering, river crossing, basic mountaineering techniques, and outdoor cooking, Kevin’s expertise is an enormous gift to our trips program and its ongoing development. A huge thank you to Kevin for his willingness to come back to serve Covenant Point with the many skills developed over the years since his time here!

Trips camps are filling up for this summer, Check Availability now and Register Online before it’s too late!


Chuck Frasier Memorial Campaign Update

The new directors house is coming along nicely. Drywall is up, and painting should be done before next week thanks to Al Louria, a painter friend of Covenant Point who has donated his time this week to paint the entire house!  We are so thankful for the generous gifts of the many friends and supporters in the Chuck Frasier Memorial Campaign.  Thanks to generous donations we have raised $435,318 of the $600,000 we are looking to raise for the building of a directors home, and the endowing of our internship program.

Here is an excerpt from a testimony of one of our previous interns.  Download the full testimony here

“Covenant Point nurtured my faith, specifically my calling toward full-time ministry, by giving me a place to serve God’s people and better develop my gifts for ministry. It was also the perfect place for God to speak into my life. Life at camp was hectic at times, but there was plenty of space for conversations with staff as well as with campers that helped to shape my life. While serving, God used the camp staff to nurture my calling, and eventually lead me to seminary.    He also used my time at Covenant Point to develop a passion to minister to God’s people in a camp setting.”
-Matt Braun | Associate Director, Portage Lake Bible Camp

We are humbled by the sacrificial giving that we have received from supporters of Covenant Point.   If you have not yet joined us, please watch this video to learn more and pray about a way you can become involved.  If you have already given there are still ways that you can get involved: share the vision of the campaign with a friend, host an optional giving dinner, or consider giving monthly to the campaign.

 


Bjorn sports the right colors

Anders and Sam Johnson are enjoying the addition of Bjorn to their family.  The CPBC family welcomes him and hopes that he can get up to camp soon.  Anders was youth pastor at Grace Covenant Church in Stambaugh for a time.

We miss seeing you around town and camp but know you both love  the big city life.


Potluck, Broomball Tournament, and New Building Pictures!

We have had an  exciting week of community involvement and outreach!  We had two exciting first-time events this past week; the very first Hagerman Lake Community Potluck, and the first annual “Yooper Cup” a free broomball tournament for U.P youth groups and churches.

The Yooper Cup was a success with over 60 people gathering from the three participating churches(Iron Mountain, Iron River and Norway) for the Yooper Cup to compete for the traveling trophy.  Iron River won both games and took the trophy home this year, and will return next year to defend their title.  Thanks to all who came out to enjoy the day. If your church would like to participate next year, contact colby@cpbc.com

The Hagerman Community Potluck was Jane Frasier, and Courtney Strom’s idea, and they went about coordinating the evening.  About 40 people from around the lake gathered in the Dining Hall on Tuesday, February 7th for a delicious potluck meal and fellowship.  Laughter was in the air as people from around the lake swapped stories around the tables, and got to know each other a little better.


Our Latest Blessings | Gifts & Donations

First, an updated Campaign total: $428,293

Click Here to Learn More About Our Next Step of Faith

In the past few months we have been very blessed with gifts from various organizations and individuals.  In total we received:  filing cabinets, a flying scot sailboat, a new soundboard, and 10 cords of wood for heating.  All were blessings and answers to prayer that came just at the right time and we extend love and gratefulness to all those involved in the donations of these excellent gifts that will better equip us to do the work of the Kingdom.

The Stories:  God’s timing is amazing.  We were anticipating purchasing a new sound board in the near future, and then we received word from a friend of camp that there was a nearly brand new sound board waiting for us in an office.  After our office renovation this fall, we were looking to purchase new filing cabinets to better organize our office space, and about three weeks ago another friend called to tell us that filing cabinets were on their way.   Sailing has had a resurgence among our summer programs in the past few years, so it was exciting news when we heard from a former staff member that there was a sail boat(big enough to hold a full cabin group!) in his drive way that had been donated by a seller on craigslist who decided to give it away instead of making a profit.  Lastly, we were ecstatic to learn that a significant amount of seasoned wood(enough for at least 1 full winter!)  had been donated to help us get ahead on our heating costs.

All these gifts were generous displays of people who gave in faith and in support of the ministry of Covenant Point.  Thanks to all who gave.  If you are interested in learning more about ways to give, consider becoming a Friend of Covenant Point, or visit our Gift & Projects Page or email us with things you are interested in donating.


Covenant Point’s Newest Baby | Johanna Marie Frisk

Johanna Marie Frisk, was born to David and Ann Marie Frisk on October 19, 2011 weighing 8lbs 3oz.  She is 11 weeks old in the picture below!  David served on staff for a number of years as our “techno-genius” and continues to give generously of his time and talent to provide camp with things like online registration,  and website administration.  He also gets us out of techno trouble that we can’t handle ourselves!  We are very thankful for the Frisks and look forward to Johanna growing up in the loving community of Covenant Point!


Porcupine Mountains Winter Camping

This past week a group of our full time staff headed out into the Porcupine Mountains for a winter camping trip. We ventured out with two objectives 1) to enjoy an adventure in this beautiful place we live, and 2) to scout the area for future winter camping retreats that we hope to develop in the next year. We skied in about four miles and stayed overnight in a simple one-room log cabin owned by the park.  From there we were able to take off on a fun off-trail snow-shoe hike by map and compass. We were treated by Dustin’s excellent cooking skills and shared many laughs and a few games by candlelight. We ended our trip with an exciting, mostly down-hill, ski back to our van. Even though it was just one night, being further out in the wilderness to rest and enjoy God’s creation was a wonderful and refreshing gift. So, stay tuned for details on forthcoming winter camping trips next winter.  For now, enjoy the pictures!


Our Next Step of Faith Update

$425,893 – Updated Campaign Total

We are incredibly excited by the new number of donations.  What a blessing to see the support of Our Next Step of Faith!  We’ve now passed the two-thirds mark for total pledges, and looking ahead to the finish line.  If you haven’t joined the Covenant Point community in this campaign, learn more by clicking here.

Here are few pictures from the building site. Today, our builders put up the trusses for the garage with the welcome help of a crew of volunteers from our Christmas Family Camp!