Urban Camp Meeting Intentionally Engages with Community

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In Northern California, a unique Adventist gathering redefines “camp meeting.”

For the second and final time in two years, the Northern California Conference’s Urban Camp Meeting met in Stockton, California, United States, on June 20-22, 2019. 

This year’s theme was “Time to Engage.” For next year, in 2020, the camp meeting will meet in a new place. And it’s all part of a plan.

The goal of Urban Camp Meeting is outreach, and every two years it moves to a new city in the region. In each two-year rotation, the first year’s goal is to lay the groundwork for evangelism, while the second year has a strong emphasis on citywide evangelism.

“When we talk about this time to engage, this is part of the initiative that we have here in Northern California, where we want to engage our calling,” said Chanda M. Nunes, associate pastor of the Capitol City Seventh-day Adventist Church in Sacramento. “Then we want to engage our churches, and when we engage our churches, we’ll be able to engage them and get them out so we can engage our community.”

For the second and final year in Stockton, about 1,000 people attended throughout the three-day event.

With the engagement theme in mind, the camp meeting focused on immigration, with workshops and laity training for immigrants and providing immigrants with needed resources.

“We’re trying to equip ourselves, educate ourselves, train ourselves [in] how do we help our brothers and sisters,” said Willie Johnson, African-American Ministries coordinator for the Northern California Conference.

Other workshops on Friday included topics like the power of rest for ministry effectiveness and a cooking class by chef GW Chew of The Veg Hub restaurant in Oakland. Immanuel Temple’s health van was onsite to offer blood pressure and diabetes testing, as well as health consultations.

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