Every year at CACCLC, we end with an opportunity for campers to share their testimonies — how their experience at camp was, something they learned over the weekend, how they saw God moving, etc. It’s always incredibly encouraging and touching to hear from first-timers and old-timers alike. Whether you had a chance to share your testimony at the mic this year or not, we would love to hear about your experience at CACCLC! Your stories help people who are new to CACCLC gain a better sense of what camp is like and what campers are like, and feel more confident about giving it a chance. Thanks for being one of the awesome #HumansofCACCLC!
Excited for camp? By now, you should have received a Welcome Packet and your carpool arrangements (if requested) in your email, and heard from your small group leader. If you haven’t yet, or if you have any questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s the music for this weekend — you can familiarize yourself with the songs before camp, or listen to these playlists on the way to camp!
Praise & Worship
As widely attributed to St. Augustine, “he who sings prays twice”! Praise & worship music is often based on Scripture and is meant to be a form of prayer—so pay attention to the lyrics and sing with your heart. Listen to the setlist on Spotify, and check out "The Do's and Don't's of Praise and Worship" for some tips on how to approach P&W (fun gifs included)!
We'll also be singing Taizé music on Sunday night...but what is Taizé?
The Taizé (pronounced like tay-zay) community is an ecumenical monastic order in Taizé, France, made up of 100+ brothers from Catholic and Protestant traditions. The songs are short phrases (usually lines from/inspired by Scripture) that we repeat over and over for contemplation/meditation.
Some songs are in Latin, so check out this helpful Latin pronunciation guide. It’s very similar to English, but here are some tips to note:
ae = eh (for example, prae => preh)
ti (when followed by a vowel) = tsee (for example, benedictio => ben-eh-dic-tsee-oh)
ui = ooh-ee
qu = (say it like it's English like "quote", not like Spanish like "quesadilla")
Taizé tends to be a favorite part of CACCLC for many — we hope you enjoy it!
I am very excited to be your camp spiritual director and to meet each of you. I am praying for you already and know that you are in for a weekend of life-changing grace. I am certain that God loves your community, and he will reveal his love for you in your being together with others like you. I am an eight-year old priest, and one of my joys has been helping the Chinese Catholic Community at St. Clare’s in Santa Clara. Your community is full of joy and hope, despite many of the struggles you endure every day. You worship from the heart. Priesthood is sharing is Jesus’ mission of teaching, prayer, healing and self-sacrifice. Every year I continue learning, and sharing, and trying my best to show the ones I meet that they are God’s beloved, that they are cherished and that their future is full of hope. I hope and pray that our time together will bring you healing and hope. Please feel free to send me your thoughts on what you are looking forward to most about this camp, and what you hope this camp will do for you.
I am a priest with the Legionaries of Christ in Cupertino, CA. My focus since 2010 has been education of children, teachers and families at Canyon Heights Academy in Campbell. I recently completed a M.A in educational leadership at the University of Notre Dame. People tell me that I am very caring and I think this is probably true. For fun, I like big groups of people having fun. I love the outdoors, following sports, playing baseball, living in California, talking about issues, or silly things. My biggest joys have been hearing confessions, especially at camps like yours.
In Christ, Fr. Tim
ExCo 2019 is excited to announce our spiritual director for this year’s camp! Fr. Timothy Lyons, LC is a priest from the Legionaries of Christ community in Cupertino, CA. He occasionally celebrates Mass at the San Jose Chinese Catholic Mission at St. Clare’s in Santa Clara, CA, where many CACCLC campers are parishioners. If you came to CACCLC 2018, you may have heard Kristen mention Fr. Timothy during the spiritual direction panel! Fr. Timothy has a gift for preaching and teaching the Gospel. His preaching is simple, but profound, touching both the intellect and heart. He inspires us to holiness and emanates the beauty of knowing the risen Christ.
Bio: Fr. Timothy entered the seminary in 1997 and first lived in San Jose from 2002-05, serving as a part-time intern at Canyon Heights Academy. In 2005, he resumed his studies, receiving a B.A. in Theology and a Master’s degree in Philosophy from Regina Apostolorum University in Rome, Italy. He returned to the United States and worked for two years in youth ministry in Sacramento and Phoenix. Fr. Timothy was ordained a priest in Rome on Christmas Eve, 2010 by Cardinal Velasio de Paolis. He served as Canyon Heights Academy chaplain from 2011-2015, and as director of Our Lady of Santa Clara Retreat Center in Cupertino from 2015-2018. He is currently the chaplain of Canyon Heights Academy.
We are so excited to announce our 2019 theme is LIVING HOPE — 主賜希望於人間、 讓我們活出望德！
We often talk about Faith and Love, but we seldom mention the third theological virtue: Hope. In the midst of each of our individual struggles, we seek out Hope for reassurance through life’s challenges. The phrase “Living Hope” has a 2-part meaning; Christ calls us to nurture our lives with Hope, becoming beacons of light so that Hope can spread and be alive within our communities.
What exactly, then, is this Christian Hope? How do we own it enough to be able to gift it to those around us?
We'll answer these questions together this coming Labor Day Weekend (8/30-9/02). Registration starts on JUNE 16TH, so mark your calendars — we hope to see you at camp!
Lucia & Albert
Your CACCLC 2019 Co-Overalls
Looking for some cool podcasts to listen to? Check out these podcasts recommended by this year’s ExCo!
Fr. Mike Schmitz podcast - Fr. Mike's popular Ascension Presents video series in audio form
Ascension Presents Podcasts - A collection of podcast series by Ascension Presents
Pints with Aquinas - Matt Fradd hosts this podcast series based on questions that St. Thomas addresses in his most famous work, The Summa Theologica.
The Lila Rose Show - A new podcast by pro-life activist Lila Rose, which explores questions about relationships, work, health, identity, purpose, and faith.
Spiritual Batteries | Apple Podcasts
Our SoCal campers hosted CACCLC’s first ever Valentine's Day-themed talent show featuring our very own talented CACCLC campers. We sold home-made coffee, tea, and pastries to drink and munch on during the performance. Check out photos and videos here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/3UxvBLCfifRBK5pp8
In NorCal, we had a lunch potluck, games, and praise and worship. We learned about building virtuous friendships through talks by Fr. Mike Schmitz and small group discussions. Check out these resources to learn on your own!
Stay tuned for more NorCal & SoCal get-togethers before camp!
Looking for spiritual reading during Lent? Here’s a list of spiritual reading book recommendations from some of your 2019 ExCo team.
Searching For and Maintaining Peace by Fr. Jacques Philippe
“I read this book last Lent (2018) and it gave me such a great perspective on what it means to gain inner peace in our lives. It also just helped me center my everyday life on God, and it definitely was a good experience reading this to start my day every morning.” - Lucia, Co-overall
Resisting Happiness by Matthew Kelly
“We know what makes us happy, but we don’t always do what makes us happy. Resistance stands between you and happiness, but how do you start choosing happiness again? Through his short, interesting stories, Matthew Kelly helps us recognize resistance and how to conquer resistance to become the-best-version-of-yourself!” - Cecilia, Fundraising
Interior Freedom by Fr. Jacques Philippe
"This is a short book with a lot of deep insights — if you are dealing with difficult circumstances, this book focuses on the virtue of hope and and offers spiritual guidance to finding peace in a chaotic world." - Melissa, Web Designer
YouCat - Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church by Christoph Schönborn
“This is a great book for those who are trying to identify themselves as a youth Catholic in the modern society we are in right now. Question-answer format, and easy to follow. Definitely a book I would recommend if you have a lot of questions about your faith, or in Catholicism in general.” - Osanna, Promotions
Life Lessons - Fifty Things I learned in in My First Fifty Years by Patrick Madrid
“Has short stories that takes 10-15 minutes to read and I find them to help me see the bigger picture in different scenarios. “Life Lessons is a practical invitation to prayerful reflection on God’s active presence in our lives, especially when and where we least expect to find him!” - Jennifer Fulwiler” - Mark, Operations
Availability by Dr. Robert J. Wicks
“In this book, Dr. Wicks (a psychotherapist and Catholic speaker) talks about what it means to make ourselves available to ourselves, other people, and God. I love how applicable this book is to our daily interactions with anyone in our lives, and I especially appreciate the message he conveys about how to truly be present and love others according to the Christian lifestyle.” - Lucia, Co-overall
The Problem of Pain by C.S. Lewis
“A natural follow up to his more renowned Mere Christianity, here C.S. Lewis tackles moral ethics and the dilemma of evil and suffering - a universal and fundamental concern - with all of his customary eloquence, insight, compassion, and wit. Lewis has a wonderful gift of breaking down the complex into the comprehensible without losing much nuance, which makes this a nice primer to basic philosophy and ‘popular theology.’” - Jonathan, Small Group Leaders Lead
Becoming Human by Jean Vanier
“Jean Vanier founded L’Arche, an organization that is dedicated to the creation of homes where people with and without intellectual disabilities live and work together as peers and friends. His book is a small and powerful read that explores what it means to be human, what it means to belong, and what it means to open ourselves to others. Top off your reading experience by visiting a L’Arche home near you!” - Helen, Fundraising
Apologia Pro Vita Sua by Cardinal John Henry Newman
“God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission. I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons.” - Genesia, Designer
New to spiritual reading and don’t know where to start? Get free books from Dynamic Catholic - choose whatever sticks out to you!
Side note: You can use Amazon Smile (smile.amazon.com) to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. Consider supporting nonprofits by our very own CACCLC campers, like Rosemary’s nonprofit Empathy FX International and Kelly’s nonprofit See The Lord!
Every year, Lent seems to sneak up on me…one week we’re wishing each other “Happy Chinese New Year!” and all of a sudden Ash Wednesday rolls around and I find myself in an internal frenzy trying to decide exactly what to do for Lent. This season of penance is a great opportunity to make more room for God in our lives, as we prepare to remember and celebrate the greatest mysteries of our faith: the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus.
There’s no one “right” way to do Lent, and it’s going to look different for everyone. This is your chance to take a reflect on the areas where you personally struggle, and turn away from sin and towards Jesus through prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Here are some basic ideas for each of the pillars of Lent; try choosing one thing from each pillar! Choose Lenten practices that would ultimately draw you closer to our Lord and prepare your heart for Holy Week.
Follow along with a Lenten devotional like the one from Blessed Is She
Follow along with Lent reflections via email
Reflect on the daily Gospel reading
Go to daily Mass an extra day or two outside of Sunday
Pray the Rosary or Divine Mercy Chaplet
Pray the Examen at the end of your day
Go to Holy Hour or Stations of the Cross
Do 10 minutes of spiritual reading each day
Add dedicated quiet time to your schedule each day
Pray specifically for a different person in your life each day
Fast from social media like Facebook/Instagram, or set a time limit on those apps
Fast from Netflix
Fast from all media including TV, music, and podcasts
Fast from your snooze button
Abstain from alcohol
Abstain from soda/sweet drinks
Abstain from meat on an additional day like Wednesday
Limit your shower time
Limit your phone use at night
Fast from filling in silence with music
Fast from music with inappropriate/suggestive lyrics
Fast from unnecessary purchases
Fast from overstuffing your calendar
Give up flaking and follow through on your commitments
Give up overworking and abstain from checking your work email after hours
Give up speeding
Give up online shopping
Donate to a charity each week
Serve at a homeless shelter or soup kitchen
Greet the homeless when you see them
Spend time with those who are lonely or forgotten
Set aside money saved from not buying unnecessary things and donate it at the end to Catholic Charities or another charity
Write an affirmation note for someone each day of Lent
Write down 3 things you’re thankful for at the end of each day
Show an act of kindness to your family or roommates each day
Participate in the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge and give up your stuff
Give your time and participate in 40 Days for Life
Still need ideas for what to give up and take up?
The Grotto Network has an article suggesting what you should give up based on Myers-Brigg personality types.
Ascension has an interactive quiz to give you ideas.
One word of advice: Make it doable. Often, we can be overly ambitious and commit to way too much. We start with the best of intentions, aiming to become the ultimate spiritual ninja…but when we inevitably can’t keep up, we grow discouraged. When we set unrealistic goals, we may be tempted to give up completely. Keep your commitments modest and practical, and your Lent will be better for it!
Again, Lent is not about getting it perfectly right. Just do your best, and when you fail in your commitments, let your failure be a lesson in humility and just get up and try again the next day. Ask the Holy Spirit how He wants to make you more like Jesus, and then follow that prompting in your Lenten practices.
Thanks for joining us at CACCLC 2018!! This year, we had 110 campers and 5 religious (priests and sisters); 39% of our campers were attending CACCLC for the first time. While most campers came from all over California, we were also excited to host campers who flew in from Texas, Michigan, Nevada, and Canada!
For those who missed it or those who want to relive the memories, here’s a recap:
Day 1 (Friday night)
Check-in began with some awesome swag: a t-shirt, tote bag, eye mask and ear plugs, CACCLC stickers, lanyard, and nametag. We had dinner, played some icebreaker games, and went to mass together at the new chapel at night. Fr. Ken celebrated mass, and during the sign of peace, he taught us a different way to share the sign of peace—passing it on starting from the altar to the people. After mass, it was free time, so some headed to bed while others stayed up playing board games and eating instant ramen!
Day 2 (Saturday)
On Saturday, we started with an optional morning prayer and morning exercise. We met our small groups and created team chants, followed by breakfast and introductions. Fr. Jim’s first talk was an introduction to the core of Christianity/Catholicism. Fr. Jim reminded us that our faith came from Judaism, and said that we can be sacraments for others. He talked about the role of Mary and the saints, the purpose of hierarchy, and the stages of growth. Our journey in faith takes time, and it requires all of us: head, heart, and hands!
We discussed more in depth in our small groups, and regrouped as a large group afterwards to share our reflections and ask more questions. After, Fr. Jim led us in a “walkthrough mass” where he paused throughout to explain the different parts of the mass—he talked about the origin and meaning of different actions and words, deepening our understanding of these things many of us may have taken for granted.
After lunch, Fr. Jim gave his second talk about “The Heart.” He reminded us of the Great Commandment: to love God, and love your neighbor. We learned that our relationships should be both face-to-face and shoulder-to-shoulder. He talked about compassion (to suffer with someone), loving your enemies, and love & sexuality. He brought up community and how it is both a gift and a task that takes time.
Then, we had our annual epic large group activity - this year, it was a relay ending with short team skits!
After the large group activity, we had free time. Campers played board games, played spikeball, went hiking, played basketball, took naps, enjoyed the pool, chatted with each other, and ate snacks. After free time, we met new people over a delicious dinner.
After dinner, we had a workshop panel about spiritual direction featuring Fr. Rod and Sr. Danielle (from the retreat center) and our very own camper Kristen! They answered questions like: What’s the difference between a spiritual director and a therapist? Do you need to pay a spiritual director? How do you go about finding a spiritual director? What do you talk about?
Workshop 2 was a talk by Fr. Ken about discernment, who shared more about his own struggle with addiction and his recovery. He recommended that during discernment (about your vocation and anything else), you should speak to someone you trust (like a spiritual director), and ultimately make a decision (instead of discerning forever).
We ended the night singing praise & worship music during adoration.
Day 3 (Sunday)
Sunday began with optional morning prayer and fun partner morning exercises led by Claire and Helen. After breakfast, we heard Talk #3 from Fr. Jim on “The Head,” where he encouraged us to take time to study the Bible with good commentaries, read spiritual books, and “pray the prayer that’s given to you” because God speaks to us in different ways. He emphasized that you can’t separate the head from the heart, and quoted artist Sister Corita Kent who said “to understand is to stand under, which is to look up, which is a good way to understand.” He said wisdom is when you have good judgment AND good timing. In our small groups, we reflected on our own level of wisdom.
We had mass in the morning, followed by lunch. Unfortunately, technical problems prevented us from a successful video conference call with our sister camps WCCCLC & ECCCLC, but Cecilia walked us through all the camp’s presentations. We ooh-ed and ahh-ed at their beautiful campsites in Canada, and were fortunate to have Rey from WCCCLC join us at CACCLC so he could talk through their presentation!
After the conference call, we had a workshop from Fr. George who drove all the way from Berkeley to join us in Three Rivers for a couple hours to talk about Catholicism in the Global Church, providing some interesting stats about world religions and putting our faith (and our Chinese background) in context.
In Talk #4 on “The Hands,” Fr. Jim talked about some important practices of the Christian Life like the Corporal Works of Mercy and Catholic social justice principles. He began with some wisdom from China: “When I hear, I forget. When I see, I remember. When I do, I understand.” Taking ownership of our faith means it shouldn’t be a private matter between just ourselves and God—we cannot remain passive in our own comfort (like taking opium to feel good). We must remember that our faith is in this world. He discussed the 9 principles of social justice and challenged us saying, “if you don’t risk anything, what can you say you’ve done?” In our small groups, we discussed what scares us about doing justice.
The evening progressed with another block of free time in the afternoon, dinner, and Office Hours with Fr. Jim where he answered questions that campers had submitted throughout the weekend. At night, we sang Taize songs during Adoration, and ended with an optional Night Prayer. Many campers stayed up late at night to write affirmation notes to each other—an annual camp tradition! More ramen was eaten - thanks to Cecilia and Jonathan for the great snack selection this year!
Day 4 (Monday)
Our last day began with a later start, with breakfast and camp evaluations. We had Mass and a quick closing talk by Fr. Jim. Our ExCo overalls Cecilia and Jonathan shared some closing thoughts and awarded Lily with a special ExCo appreciation award for her hard work on design! Prizes were also awarded to the winners of the Promotion Team’s photo caption contest. After, several campers shared heartfelt and touching testimonies about their experiences at camp this year. It was a joy to hear how campers felt welcomed, how they made new friends and had meaningful conversations, and how they felt God’s presence. Thank you to all those who bravely shared with open and honest hearts! After lunch, we all took group photos before heading back out onto the road.
As the 2018 ExCo team, we want to thank all of YOU campers for coming to camp this year, especially the first-timers who gave CACCLC a chance. We hope that you all had a fruitful experience and hope to see you next year — save the date for Labor Day 2019 (Aug 30–Sept 2)!!
In the coming months, we’ll be assembling the ExCo team for 2019, so stay tuned if you indicated interest in being on ExCo or Support next year. We keep in touch via our Facebook group so be sure to join the group for all the latest announcements! Remember that community is super important, so check your camp booklet (pg. 74) for local communities and bible studies you can join. Now go forth and take ownership of your faith with your head, heart, & hands!