A local Bible camp recently announced its schedule for the summer. “Headlining” the programming for girls camp is a tea party. You know, frilly hats, dainty gloves. Extended pinky fingers grasping sweet little tea cups.
I have nothing against tea parties per se, but as the centerpiece, the highlight of a girls camp?
Is this the best camp leadership can do for innovative, creative programming – or is it the best they can come up with for girls? Would the all-male board consider including rock climbing, archery, or white-water rafting as well, or do those and similar “active” sports/endeavors fall outside their gender views? What about girls who aren’t interested in frilly hats, dainty gloves and extended pinkies?
Programming decisions aside, what kind of thinking related to gender roles and models is in evidence here? What kinds of values and views do camp leadership intend to impart to young girls about who they are in Christ and what they might accomplish for His kingdom? What are the chances these girls will hear about Junia or Phoebe or other female members of Paul’s apostolic team and strong Christian females when they’re focused on Early Grey and Emily Post?
Why not focus on these young ladies’ identity in Christ and how they can use their gifts and calling for ministry and service in building the Kingdom of God? Is this the best we can do for the next generation of Christian women?
I recently received the following:
“We would like to thank all of you who donated hats for the tea party that we had (at) Girl’s Camp. The hats were just lovely and we had one left over. However, this is an event we would like to continue each year, focusing on the girl campers’ beauty and responsibility as a child of God. We will need more hats for this coming year as well as more tea cups.” (Emphasis added.)