I believe in giving.

Brendan - Chalfont, Pennsylvania
Entered on November 20, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: community

I believe in giving. Through my life experiences I have seen the benefit and reward from giving. Every summer for the past three years I have gone to a life changing camp, called Catholic Heart Work Camp. It is a country wide organization. Teenagers from all over the country go to a high school in a different part of the country, usually a poverty stricken area, and they help people. I go and stay for a week, eat and sleep at the school, but I tend to work at houses, churches, or schools.

Through this organization and with my local Catholic Youth Organization group I have gone to Virginia Beach, Pittsburg, and Lexington, KY. At these places I work outside doing yard work, or inside painting, cleaning, and doing anything I can to make these houses nicer. I never thought it would be a huge deal to clean somebody’s house, or mow their lawn, but my view was proven wrong very quickly. The reaction of these people is incredible. They are all so grateful and heartfelt to me. It gives me a fulfilling sense of kindness. I have seen grown men crumble to tears because I took a couple days out of my summer to paint and clean his house. This is one of the only handouts most of these people will see in their entire lives. They have to work hard for everything where they live, but I always seem to hear how big of a blessing I am.

At camp we don’t just work around the clock, we also go to mass, sing, have free time, and always have a ton of fun. During the free time we get to meet other teenagers and young adults from across the country. I have many friends in states like Michigan, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Ohio, Virginia, and the Carolinas. For a kid from Pennsylvania, this is pretty good. This is just proof that God brings many people together. Through this camp I have realized that God does reward people for their good deeds. He is a giving and friendly God. This camp has really changed my life, and I will continue to go as long as I can.