Camp Harmony Lake is Raising Funds!

Dear Christian Community Friends,

I hope this letter finds you enjoying a beautiful St. John’s Tide!

I am writing to ask if you might consider supporting a child to attend The Christian Community Camp Harmony Lake this summer. The camp, which has thrived for 22 years under the directorship of Rev. Carol Kelly, and is celebrating a 50th anniversary this summer, has been an anchor in the lives of many young people as they move from camper to counselor to supporter. It is truly a work towards the future in this way, and one that is filled with love, friendship, abiding connection and support of young people connected to our movement of religious renewal.

This summer, the camp finds itself in a challenging time. It was forced to close during Covid-19, and it lost its home in Maine. It is now reopening in a beautiful spot in PA, and slowly recovering momentum. Many of the children enrolled are in families who are unable to pay the fees in this time of recession and strain. But we have not turned them away!

We are asking those who can, to donate to cover the cost, or part of the cost, for a child to attend camp this summer. The cost for one child is $1,600. We need to raise scholarship funds to cover 10 children to attend camp.

Please know that your contribution will provide lasting support for a young person from one of our communities to experience the respite, love, spiritual sustenance and connectedness of The Christian Community in a difficult time.

Please make checks out to The Christian Community Camp and mail to 10 Green River Lane; Hillsdale, NY 12529, attn Carol Kelly. Please write camp scholarship in the memo line.

Donations to the camp are tax deductible.

Many Thanks and Blessings,

Faith DiVecchio
On behalf of Revs. Carol Kelly, Anna Silber and the Camp Harmony Lake team.



Every human being has a flame, that must not be quenched. Perhaps we should really say: Every human being is a flame, that must never be quenched. This is the flame with which we come out of the fire of the spirit when we are born. It is the greatest art of all to keep this fire burning our whole life long—not only in joy, but also in grief; not only in strength, but also in weakness. Also when you are sick, even if you are mortally ill, the fire can still smolder under the ashes.

There are, however, countless ways to choke this flame and extinguish it. The material world can make a slave of us, a slave of money and possessions, of power and violence, of intoxication and addiction, which make us forget what our task is in this life.

John, the greatest among all human beings, fore-lived, fore-suffered, and fore-died for us how we can keep the inner fire burning. Always, down to our time today, he has been “the burning and shining lamp” (Jn. 5:35), who gives us a radiant example of how we can preserve our flame. In one word John sums up what we need to do: Metanoeite, which means: Change your hearts and minds. (Mt. 3:2) This flame word tells us: Do not stop moving on the way. The flame can only keep burning if every time again you dare leave behind whatever threatens to chain you to the dying earth existence. With this disposition you will one day rise out of the ashes like a Phoenix.

Mensch, so du etwas bist                                         Human Being, if you are truly something,
So bleib ja nur nicht stille stehen.                         Then do not stay there standing still.
Man muss von einem Licht                                      From one light you must go
Fort in das andere gehen.                                        Forth to the other light.
(Angelus Silesius)

–Rev. Bastiaan Baan, July 9, 2023

, ,

“He must increase, I must decrease.”

The ego is the shadow of a great light.  In a world where egoism reigns supreme we often imagine: the ego, that am I.

But if that is the only reality, what is then left of us at the end of our life?  When someone becomes old and decrepit, gradually all the capacities disappear on which our ego is based.  Nothing happens of itself anymore, until we eventually become dependent on the help of other people.  The light of self-consciousness weakens, flickers, and goes out.  What is then left of us?

What is left on earth is what we call the mortal remains, an empty husk that soon falls apart.  Earth to earth; ash to ash.

But death is much more than the inglorious end of life on earth.  It is the time when the wheat is separated from the chaff.  As the shadow of the ego fades, the light of the Spirit grows.  Christ stands at every deathbed and receives the harvest of every human life.  Only then does the dying person recognize: Christ is the light of my shadow.

Countless people live as if there will never be an end to their ego, until the irrevocability of the end of life cannot be ignored anymore and there is no longer a way back—only forward, through the eye of the needle.

We don’t need to wait for that moment.  We can also try, in the midst of life while we are fully engaged in our everyday existence, to begin to walk this way forward.  Then we begin to realize: I am very small, and the world that stands behind me is very large.  The greatest of all people on earth, who became the smallest of all, let the light of his shadow manifest with the words: “He must increase, I must decrease.”

Then only, if these words are fulfilled in life and death, is the promise fulfilled: “Christ in me.”


Rev. Bastiaan Baan, July 3, 2023.