By Kevin Kindelin
Batter up! Opening day for Immanuel’s 2nd Annual Shining Stars Baseball/Softball Camp is quickly approaching. Running June 27th through July 1st, registration is open now. Our camp offers a unique experience for boys and girls ages 5-10, especially those kids who haven’t played organized baseball or softball. The emphasis isn’t on producing a bunch of little all stars destined for the big leagues, but rather to help them to become “Shining Stars” in both the game and life.
The goal is to teach and share the love of Jesus with our children while passing on a love for the game of baseball /softball. The intentional blend of faith and fun allows the children to learn baseball/softball skills, but more importantly, teaches them to learn about and share the love of Jesus through our interactions with them. Time is set aside for praying and talking about Jesus. Healthy snacks will be provided (sorry, no hot dogs, peanuts or crackerjack).
A couple of years ago, Pastor Warren sensed that God was leading him to combine and share his love and knowledge of baseball that stemmed from a lifetime of playing and coaching the game, with his love and vocation of spreading and sharing the word of Jesus. He approached his friend, Tim Storm, with the idea of a Christian faith based baseball/softball camp for kids. Tim is a long-time member of Immanuel who has been involved with Palatine Youth Baseball for many years as a coach and leader of the organization.
Together, they partnered to kick off the Shining Stars Camp last year. The camp was a great success featuring the accumulated baseball/softball knowledge and experience of various adult coaches, as well as providing high school baseball/softball athletes to work the “skill drills” with the children. “The children love interacting with the older kids, and even look up to them,” Pastor Warren noted. “We also had a day with a recent minor league catcher, Kevin Nelson, who lead our camp for a day and truly got our kids excited about the game. Kevin is also a member of Immanuel and simply brought his vast experience to the children in a very fun manner. The kids absolutely loved him.”
The camp is provided free of cost located at Hamilton Park in Palatine. Hamilton Park is just across from Sundling Junior High School at 1037 N. Smith Street. Children will need to bring fielding gloves. All other equipment will be provided, although children are encouraged to bring helmets and bats if they already own them.
Immanuel’s Stronger Together campaign encourages us to reach out into the community to share our love of Jesus Christ and also to instill and develop the same in our children through various ministries and initiatives. What better way than to bring them to a community park where Christian values and teachings will be displayed and a good time can be had by all teaching and learning baseball/softball skills? Pastor Warren points out, “Given that Immanuel desires to become Stronger Together by building up our community in Christ, it seems like a great opportunity to achieve that goal.” Won’t you join us?
It’s not too late to register at www.immanuelpalatine.org/baseball or email Pastor Warren Schilf firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wear your Cubbie blue or you Sox black. Just be there with your kids and grandkids…and spread the word. Just one thing, no Cardinal’s gear allowed…just kidding. We all get along at this camp!