The LCM men's and women's groups went to Camp Chatuga for a weekend retreat! We left on Friday and stopped for dinner on the way up. Once we arrived, we quickly developed a legendary game: Chatugaball. After playing that and hanging out and relaxing a bit, we gathered 'round a fire built by the marvelous, the one and only, the legend himself, Pastor Chris Heavner. We chatted and made s'mores and whatnot, and then men's group lead devotions. On Saturday, the men's and women's groups split up. The women's group hiked to a magnificent whooshing waterfall, whilst the men's group played more Chatugaball. We reconvened to watch the football. That night, we gathered around the fire again and the women's group lead a devotion. Sunday morning, we woke up and did an abbreviated church service, and drove home, rested and rejuvenated for the upcoming week.
On September the 8th the members of the church got to participate in gods work our hands. We had all sorts of different projects to be a part of including picking up trash at Abernathy Park, making surgery caps for the children’s hospital, and Hope globes for the children too. I was a part of the group that went to Abernathy park to pick up trash. It was very fulfilling to feel god working through our hands. We removed a lot more litter from the park than I expected. Since god gave us this beautiful Earth it is our duty to protect it in any way possible and our team did just that.
The Chattahoochee tubing trip was a lot of fun! We got to hang out with friends while floating down the river, then we had a good German dinner. It was a good opportunity to bond with people that we may not have known, while enjoying the beautiful sights that the river has to offer.
On the first Saturday after the start of classes, LCM had the back to school lake outing on Lake Hartwell. We had 16 people come and enjoy the water, tubing, friends, and food. Some people couldn't manage to stay on the tube the whole time (myself included), but we all had a great time. Back on the shore we were competing "walking on water" and just hanging out and talking. We capped off the afternoon with a great dinner, and we are looking forward to the next lake trip!
This past Sunday afternoon we gathered for a welcome back lunch at church, one of my favorite traditions of the year. For me it is a time to reconnect with old friends, meet new friends, and it provides a time of fellowship with members of the congregation. Of course, the occasion also brings a delicious meal and delicious dessert, which I will never complain about. I look forward to the start of the school year and continuing relationships with new friends I met at the welcome back lunch.
The LCM Men's Group is an opportunity for fun and fellowship. At the beginning of the semester, we try to do service-project-like activities. For example, earlier this semester we baked cookies with the LCM Women's Group for the Kairos Prison Ministry. Towards the end of the semester, we do more stress-relief-based things, like bowling or playing video games. We all have so much fun throughout the semester, and it's great that we have this opportunity to get to know each other better.
On April 13-14 the Clemson LCM leadership team met for a weekend planning retreat. The group gathered at the Rocky Bottom Camp for the Blind, a beautiful retreat center located 40 minutes north of Clemson. On Friday night, they gathered to share a devotion, followed by PC’s famous frito pie. Over the weekend, the leaders talked about upcoming events and plans for the fall semester. A big point of discussion was the upcoming semester and new student outreach. In addition to this, they talked over finding an invigorated focus on the ministry’s call to service. It was a wonderful time, and the team really enjoyed bonding.
LCM Women's group meets every Monday for fun and fellowship! We usually meet at Starbucks on campus, but we can sometimes be found at Spill the Beans enjoying some delicious ice cream. We talk about the "high" and "low" parts of our weeks, Paula usually leads a devotion, and we share a little about our faith as well. Our activities range from coloring to taco nights to baking apple pies. I enjoy women's group because it's an awesome way to take a break from studying, get to know friends, and have fun in an awesome community of faith!
LCM sent a group to Germany for spring break! The following are reflections on the trip.
In March a group of LCM students had the opportunity to spend their spring break in Germany touring locations important to the life of Martin Luther as well as to European history. Our itinerary included many destinations: Wittenberg, where Martin Luther nailed the 95 Theses; Erfurt, where Luther was a monk; Eisenach, where Luther was hidden following his excommunication; Eisleben, Luther’s birthplace and deathplace; Mansfeld, Luther’s childhood town; and Leipzig, a population center in the eastern region of Germany. We spent at most two nights in any location, meaning we were constantly moving to see new sights and interact with unique historical landmarks. The entire 34-person group was experienced in travel by train at the end of the trip. I enjoyed being able to see a cross-section of the Thuringia region’s culture and history over the week, and would love to return one day. The multitude of churches and museums we toured in Germany have given me a better perspective on the role of the Reformation in both German and global history, and the time spent with new and old friends has given me a better perspective on how we continue to improve and carry forward the church in our lives today.
We spent our first few days in Germany in Wittenberg, perhaps the town most associated with Martin Luther. The Luther house museum had lots of models and artifacts related to Luther’s lifestyle in the 16th century. We took a tour of the town and saw the Castle Church where Luther nailed the 95 theses - it was so cold out I had to wear my scarf wrapped all around my head. Sunday morning, we attended a German-language worship service in the Town Church before we headed off to Erfurt.
For Spring Break I went with the LCM group to Germany for a Martin Luther tour. The whole trip was fun, even if it was a little cold and windy. I had several favorite parts to the trip, including all of the museums and tours around the towns. I think that my overall favorite part of the trip was the tour of the Wartburg Castle. We were able to go inside, and see the room where Martin Luther translated the Bible into German, which helped create the modern German language. Not only was this a historical Luther site, but it also had lots of other history as well. Another experience that stuck with me was attending the church on Sunday for a service in German where Luther preached while in Wittenberg.
On Wednesday, we made it to Weimar, touted as a “cultural capital” of Germany of sorts. We spent the afternoon at the nearby Buchenwald concentration camp, where more than 50,000 political prisoners, Jews, and others died leading up to and during World War II. Visiting was an emotional experience. It was astounding that such a pretty, historical, and cultural city could be so close to such a deadly place. Likewise, it was unsettling that Martin Luther’s teachings could be used to justify crimes against dissidents and Jews. After a time of reflection and decompression that evening, some of us made it into the city, saw the statue of Weimar resident poets Goethe and Schiller in the square, and met some friendly young expats who showed us around.
Our Annual LSM Spring Content Retreat in Columbia, SC was themed "Roles of Women in the Church." A decent-sized group of Clemson students joined with students representing Lutheran Campus Ministry groups from Virginia Tech, UNC, USC, Winthrop, and the Citadel. We had very meaningful and productive conversations about the developing roles of women in the church, and more specifically the ELCA. Additionally, we watched "The Red Tent," a miniseries about the twelve tribes of Israel narrated by Jacob's only daughter, Dinah. Of course we also shared in fellowship with the other campus ministry groups by playing games and making an afternoon trip to downtown Columbia. Overall, we had a fun, interesting, and fulfilling weekend with our brothers and sisters in Christ.