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Ladore Senior Conservatory 2014
June 22-July 6, 2014

Report by Laura Fyn

The PENDEL Division has a long history of offering a high standard of local and divisional music programs throughout the year, which continue on in a unique way throughout the summer. As part of our summer music programs, Ladore Senior Conservatory was once again offered this summer from June 23rd – July 7th at Camp Ladore in Waymart, Pennsylvania. This annual specialized music camp is for Salvationist teens ages 12-17, and focuses on cultivating their musical and leadership abilities while providing a safe, welcoming environment for spiritual growth.

This year’s Senior Conservatory was different from the past because of the separation of previously offered Creative Arts classes into a separate camp during the summer, called Teen Arts Camp. This resulted into Senior Conservatory becoming a specialized music conservatory, offering students the choice of being either piano or brass Instrumental majors. All students continued to take part in chorus as well as sight singing classes, theory classes, and private lessons each day.  Two public concerts, as well as a soloist night were held throughout the two week camp.

As the students grew in their musicianship and musical knowledge within their various classes, each day began with a period of corporate worship, as well as cabin Bible studies led by various members of the summer music staff. This year’s Bible study was an overview of the New Testament, encouraging and equipping these impressionable teens to dive into the Word of God on a regular basis in their lives.

When the students weren’t in Bible study or music classes, they were participating in various summer camp activities offered at Camp Ladore, including boating, hiking, playing sports, high ropes courses, or even spending time with animals at the petting zoo. Each day the students were able to swim, spend time in the beautiful scenery, and participate in various evening programs. As part of the leadership cultivation of the summer music staff, each evening program was planned and carried out by a different member of the staff. The pinnacle of these evening programs was a creative campfire on a rainy evening, with the use of an indoor fireplace as the campsite! Along with s’mores and skits, this evening proved to be the social highlight for many in attendance.

As much fun as there was in the various music classes and camp activities, some of the most precious moments of Senior Conservatory were found on the two Sundays spent in worship together. The first Sunday, planned by the Divisional Music Department staff, was held outdoors at the dam. This gorgeous setting along the lake provided a calming, spiritual atmosphere where many were able to renew personal relationships with God, as well as share words of encouragement and testimony with one another. All were able to participate in writing out their own thoughts and struggles with living a life of holiness onto scraps of fabric, which were then braided together at the end of the service. This braid was displayed as a symbol of unity throughout the rest of Senior Conservatory.

The second Sunday, on the last day of camp, was planned by the junior summer music staff, who chose to hold a prayer walk based on the life of David, ending with all the cabins coming together at the north shore of Lake Ladore. With all gathered in this special place, the worship service that followed included a message by junior staff member Ben Clarke. A choral arrangement of “Come to Jesus,” sung by all of the students at the end of the service, provided a time of reflection as Senior Conservatory was coming to a close.  

The final concert of Senior Conservatory was held in the Ladore Lodge Chapel, an opportunity to not only display all that was learned over this two week period, but to witness to all who had come to experience this event. Many family members, friends, and corps officers were in attendance, as were many seniors who had been staying at the Lodge. All of the items performed by the students had become much more than just an opportunity to showcase their talent, but had truly become a corporate offering of love and adoration to our Lord Jesus Christ.

As we continue to work with these beautiful young people throughout the years, it is our hope and prayer that they continue to grow in their knowledge of Christ as they dedicate their many talents to His glory throughout their lives!