Rev. Aaron and Sandra Finley work with our Teen Students, grades 6-12. Rev. Finley has been at Grace since 1995. Rev. and Mrs. Finley met in college where both of them had a desire to work, disciple and mentor teenagers. Reverend Finley's heart's desire is to see teens give their heart to Christ and live surrendered lives.
The Student Ministry Philosophy at Grace includes several characteristics: SAVED, SURRENDERED, STUDYING, SOUL BURDENED, SEPARATED.
Psalm 78:4-6 says, "We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done. For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make them known to their children: That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children."
Ephesians 4:11-12 for the process of maturing the saints .. tall or small!
The desire of this ministry is to see teens succeed spiritually. As Billy Sunday would often say ... "Give God your cradle not your crutch." The student ministry has seen a lot of young people go on to college and become an active part of a local church ministry and serve in full time Christian ministry.
Our Teens with Willie Partin at the LIT Conference
Willie Partin Preaching
Our Teens with Willie Partin at the LIT Conference
The College and Career Group welcomes young adults from 18 to 29 years old, and meets every Sunday morning at 9:45 a.m. and Sunday evenings at 6:00 p.m. The leaders focus on issues facing young adults in today’s world while pursuing God’s Will in life. The group seeks to draw closer to God and each other through these studies and times of fellowship. We also have two monthly events to give opportunities to build relationships with peers.
Using the unique benefits of Christian camping, we serve people by presenting the Truth of God with the love of God so lives can be changed to the glory of God.
Faithful to the Bible
Serving the Local Church
Refreshing Enjoyment of Life in Christ
Committed to Excellence
Environment Conducive to Spiritual Growth
An Amazing Work of God
In the late 1960s God brought a dedicated group of Christians together led by Ken Hay. Steps of faith helped them recognize that there was a great need for a camp, but this group had very few resources. In God’s timing, the group was given access to sizable funds at very low interest. It was a faith venture all the way that had begun when Ken and his friend Dr. Walter Fremont prayed for a quality Christian camp in the Southeast area of the United States 10 years prior to its founding.
The group discovered a ruggedly beautiful 810-acre tract of land just over the North/South Carolina border in Transylvania County, North Carolina. The money was used to purchase the land and begin construction. It was hard to imagine a “new, young” camp with such a nice property and facilities. It was also hard to imagine a camp so desperately dependent on God and the kindness of God’s people to simply make it financially through a first year.
Along the way God has allowed the ministry to expand its reach in ways beyond comprehension. Thousands of families and churches have been encouraged in the critical area of Christian music through our music ministry. From 1987 until 2004 The Wilds had an incredible opportunity to minister to over 35,000 campers through The Wilds of the Rockies located near Kremmling, Colorado. In 2001, CampsAbroad became the official missions arm of The Wilds, providing camp training and materials to over forty foreign ministries at no charge. Then, in our fortieth year, the Lord answered nearly 10 years of prayer and opened wide the doors for us to begin a camping ministry in the Northeast. The Wilds of New England, located in Deering, New Hampshire, currently offers several summer weeks of teen and junior camps.
From three weeks of camp and 250 campers during that first summer of 1969, to year-round camps hosting over 20,000 campers per year, The Wilds has been here to assist local churches to reach the youth and families of our nation for forty-plus years! A comment from many through the years is “Wow, this place has really changed since I was a camper years ago, but in some ways it’s still the very same place! Does that make sense?” Yes, it does make sense. It is important to change and to progress, but it is also important to stay the same in the areas that matter for eternity. May we always rely on the grace of God to keep us true to Him.
Since 1970, students from around the country have been coming to The Wilds with their youth groups to learn about God, enjoy the mountains, and have good, clean fun. They meet new people from around the country, try new activities, and hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ presented in a way teens can understand.
From GaZEEball to the Lake, Archery to Frisbee Golf, Cool Beans to the waterfalls, there’s always something to do at The Wilds! The list of things to do is always growing—just try to get it all done in a week!