I honestly can’t pinpoint that exact moment when we decided to do the whole Pray! shirt thing. I remember noticing Lu’s Sing! and Read. shirts and wanting one. It was a joint idea to do one for fun with the word Pray! She said we only needed 6 people to get cheaper shirts. It was Young Teen 2, and the girls from my youth group were at camp. They all wanted one, plus me, Lu, Alison, and then I began asking the other staff. By the end of ordering, we ended up getting close to 60 shirts.
Never did I expect it to get that big.
Then I had to wait to get mine. Naturally, Lu got all the shirts a few hours after I left camp for the summer. Yep, that’s right, the ringleader to this whole adventure had to wait months and months before finally getting her own Pray! shirt. What’s worse is when Lu came to visit me for my birthday, she managed to forget the 8 shirts that I needed. Finally, I received a package with my shirt along with the girls’ shirts and the one I got Whit for Christmas. I’m pretty sure I was doing the jumping-up-and-down-extremely-excitedly dance!
I wore my shirt off and on throughout the months and made sure that I had it packed whenever I was headed back to camp. Last year, I tried to start Orange Tuesdays, but that didn’t stick that well. This summer, I began to see very early on the staff who brought back their Pray! shirts. I made the executive decision to have Pray! shirt Fridays and began to spread the word.
It was great to get comments and people wanting their own.
Honestly, Alison and I had every intention of doing another shirt this year. We debated for a while whether we should do another order of Pray! shirts or choose another word. We had this timeline mapped out of when we wanted to have the order done and everything. We were just stuck on the word. Eventually, time got away from us as it seems to very easily when you’re at camp. Time slipped away and we never got an order. I thought that the whole Pray! shirt thing would just be a special memory from Summer ’11.
Little did I know there was a surprise coming.
All of a sudden, it was my last Friday at camp, and naturally, I was wearing my “Friday outfit” that consisted of my Pray! shirt, pink shorts, and my Zebra headband. We had taken another group picture with all of us in our shirts earlier that day. Stacy Bender comes up to Lu and I as we’re chatting on the Lodge lawn. She expressed great interest in the shirts, and we filled her in. She asked where she could get them, and I sheepishly explained about the whole adventure this summer. She jumped into this whole idea of getting more shirts ordered and starting a business and selling them all over. My mind was blown! She said she would take care of it all since she was a little more free than 2 upperclassmen in college. We joyfully said that sounded like a fantastic idea and looked to hear more from her soon.
Honestly, I was thinking, “Oh, it’ll be a little while before we really see anything with this idea.” My thought was Stacy having to go through mounds of paperwork to get a business plan written, business created, and all other aspects that come with running a business.
Again, little did I know there was a surprise coming.
About the author of today’s post: My name is Katie Strupp, and I just finished my second summer of working at Village Creek Bible Camp. I’ve done everything from counseling to being the Craft Room Facilitator, to working in the kitchen. I could share countless stories of my adventures there. I am from Sigourney, Iowa, which is located in the SE portion of the state. My family farms, and I’m a country girl through and through. Currently, I am in my last semester of coursework at the University of Northern Iowa. In January, I will begin student teaching. In May, I will have a degree in Elementary Education with a minor in Special Education as a Strategist Level 2.
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