Friday, January 21, 2011


The purpose of this Blog Post is to prove that our Servant Leadership Team (composed of Corey, Angela, Kathleen, Kristen and Nicole) is good. This will first be done in explanatory, paragraph format, and secondly in the form of a syllogism*.

*Syllogism: [sil-uh-jiz-uh m]
1. Logic . an argument the conclusion of which is supported by two premises, of which one (major premise) contains the term (major term) that is the predicate of the conclusion, and the other (minor premise) contains the term (minor term) that is the subject of the conclusion; common to both premises is a term (middle term) that is excluded from the conclusion. A typical form is “All A is C; all B is A; therefore all B is C.”
2. deductive reasoning.
3. an extremely subtle, sophisticated, or deceptive argument.


Salt. Everybody likes it. (I feel pretty confident in saying this). Some people use it wisely. Some people (ahem, Chris Aderhold) use way too much of it. Regardless of the amoung used, people generally like the way salt makes their food taste. (Side note: My dad used to put salt on his watermelon.) I guess what I'm trying to say is: salt makes things better.

At Camp Gray, we use normal amounts of salt, perhaps more if you consider all the snow/ice we get. But we also have a special kind of salt. This salt is spelled a little differently (SLT) but we pronounce it the same. And just like the salt you put on your food, this SLT makes everything better.

SLT stands for Servant Leadership Team. Our SLT missionaries are young people who have already graduated college. They come live and work at Camp Gray for a year. Many of you may be familiar with the oft repeated Bible verse from summer camp, "Rather, let the greatest among you be as the youngest, the leader as the servant" (Luke 22:26). Our SLT missionaries truly strive to live out this verse in their daily lives here at camp.

Here is a list of the top ten ways in which they make Camp Gray better (in no particular order):
1) They are the face of Camp Gray (which is good for emotional and aesthetical reasons). They make sure that people are feeling comfortable and having a great time, something that the rest of us could not do very well from the office.
2) They are the ones who lead all of our retreats! Without them, we would only be able to handle a few groups throughout the school year, with them we handle approximately, at least, 130 groups. (Wow!)
3) They make everything more fun, because they are such fun people.
4) The SLT pray together a lot, which is fruitful for them, and all of Camp Gray!
5) The SLT help prepare meals that are tasty and delicious (and salty).
6) SLT members are true missionaries, who only get paid a small stipend, which is good for camp's budget.
7) SLT missionaries double as skilled baby sitters for the families on camp.
8) They provide extra team members for sports such as basketball, football and randomly made up games.
9) It snows a lot here, and SLT missionaries shovel a lot, keeping our walking paths clear all winter!
10) SLT missionaries are willing to do anything that needs to be done, in order to serve camp's mission.

In summary:
If A makes B better, A is a good thing.

A = Salt
B = Food
Salt makes food taste better. (A makes B taste better).
Therefore, salt is a good thing. (Therefore A is a good thing).

A = SLT Missionaries
B = Camp Gray
SLT missionaries make camp better. (A makes B better).
Therefore, SLT missionaries are good people. (Therefore, A is a good thing)

If B is pronounced the same as A, but spelled differently, and A is a good thing, then B is also a good thing.

A = Salt
SLT is pronounce the same as salt. (B is pronounce the same as A).
Salt is a good thing. (A is a good thing).
Therefore, SLT is a good thing. (Therefore, B is a good thing).

We have therefore shown the two proofs for the goodness of our Servant Leadership Team Missionaries. If you know someone who is graduating college this spring, and they desire to be like salt, please encourage them to apply to be a SLT missionary at Camp Gray!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Where Did All the Kids Go?!

By: Kathleen Corrigan

GOOD NEWS for all you avid Camp Gray blooggers-we FINALLY have another blog post! We apologize for our slack, but some of us got so caught up in the Holidays that we forgot our blogging responsibilities. But, fear not! We're back to provide you with all the "going-ons" of good ol' Camp Gray! :)

Well, it's winter here at Camp and a beautiful one at that! Just before Christmas we had a solid 2 feet of snow come rolling through and we staff have been taking advantage of it: sledding, cross-country skiing, snow-shoeing, snowball throwing... and TONS of shoveling! Camp covered in snow has allowed me to experience one of the most beautiful winters yet, and I am incredibly thankful for it! Though, as of late, some snow has melted and we have been finding other ways to keep ourselves busy.

As a first year staff member, I am, personally, still getting used to this time of year. While winter is my favorite season, winter on camp also means a lot less time to spend with kids! (?!?! What could we possibly do with ourselves?!) Well I have quickly figured out that though we don't have group after group arriving at camp, there is still plenty to be done - a lot of cleaning, updating, polishing, and preparing camp for the pending insanity the spring will bring. I must admit that though this doesn't sound as exciting as the fall season we made it through, I actually was pretty excited for this slower pace to start up at camp and to do some of these mundane, yet necessary, projects. The hectic fall go me ready for a low-key winter. Though I am already anxiously anticipating the craziness of spring!

It's interesting, and maybe even a bit of a struggle, looking at my winter responsibilities at camp in light of my fall responsibilities. The fall was busy ALL the time; it was a craziness! We were run ragged every day tending to energetic children, late nights, running around camp, energetic children, few days off, oh... and not to mention energetic children. For some of us, coffee had become our best friend, and we were all exhausted! Yet, I still managed to go to bed every night able to say, "This is totally worth it!" Because every day that I got to spend with a group of children, I got to se smiles on their little faces, repeatedly hear the words "I love Camp Gray!" shouted from their little mouths, and receive giant-sized hugs from their little arms. How could you not praise God at the end of an exhausting day (week, month, whatever) after being able to experience all of that?

That being said, feeling the same joy and motivation is different throughout the winter. While I'm not as exhausted, it can be a struggle making the mundane winter work feel as meaningful as the lively work of the fall. Because of this, I find it important to remind myself that when you're living life as a Servant for the Lord, even the most trivial of tasks is never meaningless. As St. Teresa of Avila said, "If obedience sends you to the kitchen, remember that the Lord walks among the pots and pans." Though sometimes a struggle, the quietness of winter is also providing me with more time to work on important things such as my prayer life. I find more time to be still with the Lord and work on my own relationship with Him so that I am refreshed and renewed to share His love with others in the spring. Praise God!

Well all, thanks for taking time to read! We pray that you all have a safe and blessed winter season! And please remember to keep us in your prayers as we prepare for another busy season coming up in just a few short weeks! Be well and God bless!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Secrets Revealed

By: Angela Lademan

I woke up this morning, looked out my window and realized: IT'S NOVEMBER! Now that a few months have gone by since the start of our year round program, I wanna rewind to our first group of the year, our family camp. For a question was posed to me that, at the time, I wasn't quite sure how to answer, and since then, I have continued to explore: what is it that motivates the Camp Gray staff?

I was having a conversation with a gentleman who's job has something to do with training companies in effective customer service. He was fascinated and impressed with the Camp Gray staff and was wondering what kind of secrets the Hoebens were keeping from the rest of the world on how to train for and maintain quality customer service. He said that he was going to have a chat with Jeff, and perhaps he did and was greatly enlightened, for Jeff always has good things to say, but for what it's worth, I'd like to offer some of my reflections on the secret to the joy, energy, and drive found here at Camp Gray (and maybe Jeff would agree and sir, if you are reading this, I'm sorry it's taken so long for me to give you a decent answer--I can be a slow thinker).

Conclusion #1: Coffee
On one early morning in October, we were working with our second or third Rome Corners group of 50-75 students. It was the last day of a three day retreat. I was tired, wet from a stream hike, dirty, and wearing the same shirt that I had on for the last three days. I went to pour some steamy coffee into my travel mug to drink on our way to solo hikes. One of the chaperons saw and exclaimed, "So, that is the secret to the Camp Gray energy!" I merely smiled and thought to myself Coffee is indeed a luxury, but not quite the secret.

Conclusion #2: Fun and Games
On another occasion, a sixth grader was asking me what it was like to work here. After I gave a short description, she decided that she would want to work here as well because "You just get to have fun at camp all day and play games." Well, she was close, but not quite there.

I'm sure there have been many other conclusions drawn about the Camp Gray staff, but from what I can see, and from my own experience having the joy of working here this year as a volunteer, the motivation is rooted in the center of camp in a little chapel on the edge of the woods: Jesus in the tabernacle.

From the little saints quotes posted in Moses, to the pictures of the Sacred Heart in all the buildings, to the daily duties camp requires, I am reminded that the only reason I am here is for the Lord. And so, dear sir, what does this have to do with the customer service here at Camp Gray? I'd say it has everything to do with it. Each camper is not simply a customer who walks in, purchases something and walks right back out, but a person that God has called me, specifically, in this moment, to serve in some way, whether it be through a talk, or a team building activity, or simply through cleaning his or her dishes after a meal in such a way that he or she can be drawn closer to God.

My job is to love because Christ loved...And I was thinking today that love is the most costly, precious thing in every person's life, yet, a person can never be paid for giving it...So, essentially, I am not motivated because of money (because I don't make any), or status (most people don't even remember my name at the end of a retreat), or because I will receive something in return (most people I will never see again), but because the Lord has found me to be a tool that He can work with as He writes the masterpiece of each person's life, a tool from which His love can be poured onto each page.

Final Conclusion:
I answer with a question: How can an instrument, no matter how small, not be overjoyed or working to it's full potential when the greatest of artists chooses it to work with and is holding it firmly in His capable hands?

Friday, October 8, 2010


By: Corey Sielaff

Think back, if you will, to the date September 27th, 2010. This was the day this blog was supposed to be posted. My sincere apologies for this late reflection, however it is simply a reflection of the crazy busy schedule we have been keeping around these parts. Our year-round retreat program is now in full swing. We have welcomed in several ESP retreat groups, a handful of team building and leadership groups and a pair of confirmation classes. All around camp you can hear discussion of environmental stewardship, the gifts of the Holy Spirit, teamwork and of course "Something Beautiful" by NeedtoBreathe blaring in the background. As we work through the heart of our busy fall season we are preparing for a retreat of our own. The Salt Team and many of the full-time staff are rolling out for a weekend of backpacking and fellowship in the beautiful fall colors of the Porcupine Mountains. It will be some welcome rest and relaxation in preparation for a few more months of high-energy retreats.

Besides hiking, playing music, and being all together goofy, many of this years Camp Gray staff share a similar hobby; photography. It is a rare occasion when someone is not snapping a shot of the beautiful landscape of Camp's 225 acres, taking a photo of kids completing a low ropes element or attempting to catch someone off guard for a funny picture. So you may be asking yourself, "self, why is Corey telling us this. We don't get to see any of these pictures." Well, it is our goal at Camp Gray to change that. First off, our fearless Assistant Director and head photographer extraordinaire Chris "Topher" Aderhold often posts his most recent pictures on the CG facebook page. This is our invitation to you to become a friend with Camp Gray Catholic Camp on Facebook ( and view the pictures. But, if Facebook is not your cup of tea, we have another option for our avid Camp Gray blogspot fans. We at Camp Gray will be hosting a picture contest here on the blog. Every few weeks we will post some new pictures taken around camp by one of our many volunteers. You will be able to vote for your favorite picture, and at the end of each month we will tally the votes and post the winner on the blog! It seems so simple, because it really is.

Well folks, thanks for reading along. We hope to see you all around camp sometime soon, but if not, we hope that you are keeping the camp spirit alive in your homes, places of business and other random public places! And to send with a favorite movie quote which fits perfectly with our theme for the year, remember that you are "B-E-A-utiful".

Monday, October 4, 2010

Musings by Mo-T

It is just about one year since I was hired on as a regular poster here on Misplaced and Found. (Poster, as in one who posts, specifically in this case every other week which some might call bi-weekly, bi-monthly, semi-weekly, etc...) If you don't know what I'm talking about, you better read this for some background information: Click Here.

For all you loyal readers, it probably seems to you as if I did not make good on my promise to post something new and exciting every other week. If you think that, you are wrong. I never promised that what I write is new or exciting. Admittedly, though, I did not continue to post twice a month for the entire year. I believe that I slowed down considerably in the winter/spring time, and never attempted a post in the summer. For this I apologize. I have learned from my mistake, though. I will never again promise to post on here with any sort of regularity.

The good news, though, is that things are going swell around here. You can read all about it on our last few posts...or I can give you the short version:
The SLT (Servant Leadership Team) is already hard at work on their fifth week of retreats.
We have done two Confirmation retreats so far. (Yay for the gifts of the Holy Spirit!!!)
Our free time has included a lot of hanging out and cooking/eating together. We have also enjoyed playing football, and our own version of arena football in the Camp Gray "Elk Antlers" Memorial Gymnasium.

But...our favorite group hobby is having a "jam session". This includes (but is most definitely not limited to) 1-4 guitar players, 1 drummer (playing congas or a drum box), 1-5 singers, much talk of banjos and other such instruments, and 1 almost 2 year old Andrew Hoeben peeking over the pews at us and "dropping" guitar picks inside our guitars. At our best we sound (and look) something kind of like this: Click Here.

That is all for now folks, keep your eyes peeled for some more Musings by Mo-T some indefinite amount of time in the future!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Weekly Gospel Devotion

Editor's Note: Would you like to receive weekly email devotions about the upcoming Sunday Gospel written by our fine volunteers and staff? Shoot an email to with, "ADD ME TO THE DEVO LIST (please)!" in the subject line, and we'll add you to the list so that you'll start receiving excellent, thought-provoking devotions like the one below, written by Kathleen!

Gospel for Sunday, October 3:

The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith."
The Lord replied,
"If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to the mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you.

"Who among you would say to your servant
who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field,
'Come here immediately and take your place at table'?
Would he not rather say to him,
'Prepare something for me to eat. Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink. You may eat and drink when I am finished'?
Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded?
So should it be with you.
When you have done all you have been commanded, say, 'We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.'"


It is no secret that we, as a society, have come to like big things. We gawk at large wrapped packages addressed to us as if it is infinitely better than a smaller package, though we have no idea what's inside. We like Venti coffees, extra large pizzas, walk-in closets, big screen TV's, and buying in bulk. We have adapted the mentality that bigger IS better though we may not finish our Venti coffee, the pizza will probably be packed up as leftovers, we may not have enough clothes to fill the walk-in closet, and the game we watch on the 73" TV is goin gto have the same plays and calls on the 20" TV. So what does it matter?!

The apostles fell into a very similar trap in this week's Gospel. They said it to Jesus, "Increase our faith," as if He would just snap his fingers to give them greater faith. One wonders why they desired MORE faith when they already had faith to begin with. Jesus responds to them by saying, "If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you." In other words, "The size of your faith doesn't matter! Even with the smallest amount of faith you can do great things!" Faith is faith-you either have it or you don't.

In the second part of the Gospel, Jesus compares the apostles to servants, saying "When a servant comes in from tending the fields, you would say to him 'Prepare something for me to eat. Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink. You may eat and drink when I am finished.' Then you would thank him." In my reflecting on this Gospel, it seems that Jesus has two messages to share. The first is that things are not just granted to us, but rather worked for. We must be diligent in our duties if we want to obtain something as a result. However, (and this leads me to his second message) we should not do things out of pride or extreme self-indulgence, but rather for the glory of God.

In our Christian life, we are called to be servants of the Lord; not slaves to ourselves. It is so easy to get caught up in the quantity of everything. We feel we need to be more holy, more faithful, or just better because there are other people who are just so much holier, more faithful, or better than us—and we want others to notice we can be bigger and better. We often become more concerned with what others see us as than what God sees us as. It is at this point that we stop serving God and begin to serve ourselves. While it is important to realize where we fall short spiritually, it is just as important to remember that with faithfulness and holiness, you either have it or you don’t; quantity is irrelevant. God doesn’t call us to be the MOST faithful; He just calls us to be faithful. So let us always keep God the focus of our lives so that we can be the simply faithful servants He calls us to be. And let us never become proud or seek glory for ourselves when we follow God’s commands, but rather look at our obedience to His will as our obligation to the God who loves us unconditionally.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

It Has Begun!

By: Nicole Heit

Our retreat season has started! We started off our week with a day of team building and fun as St. Henry's in Watertown came to Camp Gray. We continue the week with a two day team building retreat with students from Sacred Hearts in Sun Prairie. Both groups were amazing to have around and we can feel that fall is here. We also welcomed our first confirmation retreat on Sunday and are looking forward to our first ESP (environmental stewardship program) this week as well.

Speaking of fall, we had our fall picnic on Saturday. The day started with a great alumni softball game where Team Geriatrics (this team was made up of those alums with 5 or more summers of staff experience) won 22 to 20. The day ended with Mass and dinner. Everyone seemed to have a great time all afternoon. Fall is off to a great start here at camp and we are excited to continue to search for the beauty all around camp and in all the students that will be coming throughout the year.

Team Geriatrics

Team Newbies was made up of alums with 4 or less summers of staff experience

It was a great day for softball at Camp Gray!

Friday, September 17, 2010

On a Search for Something Beautiful

By: Angela Lademan

I know it's not New Years, but sometimes I think that January is a very bad time to begin with new commitments and practices when you've been in the race for a good four months already. Fall would be a much better time. Everything seems to transition in the fall and begin a new rhythm. Schools go back into session. Summer fun comes to an end. The world starts to pick up again, bringing new opportunities, challenges and memories. The air gradually ceases to smell of suntan lotion and barbecues and starts to smell of chimney smoke and apple pie...

For Camp Gray, it is the start of a new year round program. The Camp Gray staff has recommitted itself to another year of service to making the person of Christ known, loved, and served through the wonders of creation and the unique experience of a vibrant Catholic Community, welcoming people of all ages to delve deeper into their relationship with Christ and neighbor through a little time out of their busy new rhythm of life to seek God in the laughter and fellowship, stillness and graces that can be found here at Camp Gray.

To accomplish this, the Camp Gray staff has begun a search for something beautiful--the theme for this years camps! Unanimously, we have discovered that in seeking the beautiful, God's work can no longer lay in hiding. Like the clues laid out on a treasure map, all of creation, beautiful and alive, point directly to God, who desires desperately to be found and sought after. We hope that this search will begin to catch on so that God might be discovered, praised, adored, and loved in every heart.

As you begin to dive into creating a new set of commitments for this year, I encourage you to make a little room to seek God in all the little blessings around you. When you wake up in the morning (whether it's going to be a good day or not), praise God for the gift of breath. When you step out into the cold morning air, praise God that the sun is shining. When you're at work, praise God for the gift to serve others. When you come home to those you love, praise God for the gift of family...for truly, your life is something beautiful.

"Truly you have formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother's womb. I give you thanks that I am fearfully, wonderfully made; wonderful are your works." --Psalm 139