My name is Caroline Lonas. I am 20 years old and have had a richly blessed life thus far, and am excited to see what God has in store for me in the future (Jer. 29:11)!
I am currently working at Cherokee Cove as an office assistant, which has been a great experience, and I’m learning something new every day. When I’m not at the camp you can find me at home enjoying time with my amazing family, reading, trying new recipes, gardening, catching up with friends or organizing something. It’s a weird but useful hobby.
Being raised in a godly home by wise and loving parents, the truth of the Word was always before me. I was blessed to be a part of an incredible youth group at my home church, where I was challenged to have a personal relationship with Christ. I’m thankful to volunteer with this group today.
The Lord has taught me over the past few years, through joys and challenges, that I can use my passions for people and hospitality right where I am. Here and now is the mission field He has set before me. The Lord continues to teach me, daily, to serve willingly and joyfully, to seek out opportunities to share His love, to praise in the easy and the difficult times, to trust and obey Him, and to dwell in the Word.
This summer I plan to fill my quote book, dance as often as possible, practice boldness in prayer, and enjoy many rich times of conversation and laughter with family and friends.
My Experience at Cherokee Cove
Volunteering at to Cherokee Cove has always been an exciting adventure. I liked being at this beautiful place where the food was so delicious and everyone was so friendly.
During clogging performances for Praise and Graze, I started to notice the joy that was on people’s faces at the camp. Was running a camp really that fun? It seemed like a pretty amazing job, even with all the dishes. I helped out with some other camps for a few summers and absolutely loved it! I had a purpose; I was needed and was trusted with some areas of leadership. This was a big honor for the baby of the family.
After a summer without any camps, I felt like something important was really missing from my year. I started praying about camp ministry because God had slowly made it clear to me that it was something that may be in my future. I came back out to Cherokee Cove for a college day retreat in April of 2011. Again, I was reminded of the beauty and peace surrounding this place. Samantha pulled me aside and asked if I could serve as an Uphill Youth counselor that summer. I was rather taken back, but I prayed about it and it sounded like just the right thing! I was extremely nervous to about how it would go. I had heard counselor stories before! From the moment I got here, though, I was welcomed and taken in as part of the family. A fantastic summer followed full of sweet memories and lots of spiritual growth.
In September of that same year, Samantha approached me again, this time about working in the office as her assistant. After much prayer and patient training, I was a working woman! Since then, I’ve had many wonderful learning experiences and ministry opportunities. I’m so grateful for the Stephens and their patience and generosity. They show me every day, by example, what being the hands and feet of Christ to serve and care for all peoples truly means.