RBB and Military Atheists & Secular Humanists (MASH) is proud to call Amy Monsky a friend and ally. A shooting star in the secular community, she has channeled a tremendous amount of energy into Camp Quest – the summer camp beyond belief!
Camp Quest South Carolina Director
Camp Quest Chesapeake Staff
Camp Quest, Inc. Board of Directors
Spearheading this region’s Camp Quest expansion, Amy has relentlessly worked to establish and organize the first Camp Quest in South Carolina (CQSC). Not to mention, she has racked up quite an impressive resume volunteering for the secular summer camp. In addition to all of these admirable efforts towards promoting freethought , Amy Monsky is this month’s featured speaker for the Fort Bragg MASH group on Sunday, June 26th (Free event – RSVP)
Camp Quest: A Powerful Idea
If you aren’t familiar with Camp Quest just read their mission statement and you will immediately realize the tremendous positive effects this program has the potential to create within young and curious minds of both secular and theistic backgrounds.
Fun, Friends and Freethought!
What could make for a more rewarding summer camping experience than that? Here is a peek into what these young freethinkers are in for when they attend Camp Quest. The BBC also featured a nice piece on the Camp Quest. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2fI0W4Z0-io
I’m sure the vast majority of us are thinking the same thing CQSC’s Facebook friend had to say after watching this,
“I wish I’d been sent to a camp like this when I was a kid :)”
The Good News for Foxhole Atheists
Amy Monsky is now working to bring the Camp Quest experience to Fort Bragg families. Here are some of Justin Griffith’s thoughts on the matter:
“The non-theists of Fort Bragg, NC’s military community have been buzzing over the controversial Garrison Chaplain’s annual Vacation Bible School. I first noticed the VBS when I received a mass email message in my official government inbox discussing the event. I held onto that message, but attempted to rationalize it away. I did a lot more research. The Vacation Bible School is set up to teach children how to convert other children to Christianity. It also takes place on public school grounds, on a government installation (Fort Bragg). I kept trying to find reasons to put this one off and shelve it for a while, hoping to gain some new perspective. When one of our youngest non-theist members brought home a permission slip to attend this function, I immediately sent out a call for help. ”
If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em
We can easily foresee the same legal justifications used to defend the controversial evangelical Christian Rock the Fort concert also being used to defend VBS. Basically, in response to demands for cancellation they might say, “we would provide the same level of support to any other group.”
Since Amy Monsky answered the call, she has been absolutely brilliant behind the scenes. Her responses are swift, certain, and dead on. Fort Bragg’s Directorate of Religious Education, Tim McHale, has now offered to get the word out for Camp Quest South Carolina events. Amy has provided Fort Bragg with some great information, quickly taking them up on that offer. No word yet on Chaplain Tim pushing out the information in a mass email as promised, but we are optimistic! Expect updates on this developing situation.
Now on top of all that, Amy is working out a way to bring interested Fort Bragg families into the Camp Quest experience. That’s a much more difficult task, but I know she can make it happen. There is plenty of time, and I can’t wait to see how it all turns out. You can read along as the story develops over the next year here, or on the new CQSC Facebook page. (You should ‘Like’ MASH too, while you’re at it!)
I also asked the Directorate of Religious Education at Fort Bragg, Tim McHale, about the potential for establishing Camp Quest type activities on post. Regarding the idea, Tim has promised to provide an on post location similar to the VBS. He even stated that Fort Bragg resources would provide the necessary background checks and funding for the caretakers during any potential on post CQSC event. He even said he would do the same for any group and cited his willingness to support the Wiccan group, Spiral Scouts. That group has not asked for the opportunity yet though, he said.
With the visibility that Tim’s office is capable of delivering, this could be a real break-through for the general acceptance of the foxhole atheist community. Another exciting facet of this story is the fact that Camp Quest has several locations throughout the globe, many of which are near other military bases. I’m hoping to work something out with Camp Quest, Inc. (the national arm) to possibly craft on-post events in the near future across the nation.
If you want to hear more about this situation, and all of the great things at Camp Quest, come out to hear Amy Monsky speak on June 26th at 5:00 PM. (Free of charge, Please RSVP!)