Nome Hosts Arctic Camp Meeting

May 10, 2016 | Leon Ringering

The Nome Arctic Camp Meeting began Thursday, Feb. 25, with the whole community invited to join in. In preparation, “Uncle Dan” (Chet Damron) from Your Story Hour, with his wife, Carolyn, visited KICY radio station, Nome public schools and youth centers, the Boys and Girls Clubs, Head Start, and the Nome Home School Association. At each, he told stories and did his special impersonation of President Abraham Lincoln. Visiting with community and inviting them to come resulted in a successful camp meeting.

After visiting KICY, the station advertised the meetings and decided to add Your Story Hour in the English version each Sunday at 4 p.m. Alaska time. (The station has been broadcasting the Russian version for many years.) The station’s signal reaches more than 3,000 miles into Russia every night after 11 p.m. with a 50,000-watt push. KICY also asked Uncle Dan to come in for two interviews, one in English and a second in Russian.

The Nome schools and youth centers were delighted to hear Uncle Dan’s stories and to have Abraham Lincoln visit and tell about Abe’s life. Uncle Dan also did a live interview on on the local Adventist radio station, KQQN 89.3 FM, because it features Your Story Hour every day at 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. 

As a result of his personal appearances in Nome, Uncle Dan was also invited to Sunday worship services to tell the children’s sermon at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church and the Covenant Church, both in Nome. 

Monte Church from the North Pacific Union Conference Native ministries department, and his assistant, Steve Huey, gave the opening presentation then traveled to the villages of Gambell and Savoonga for additional camp meetings. 

Uncle Dan told stories to the children while the adults were blessed by featured speaker Jerry Joubert, from McMinnville (Ore.) Church. Each evening Ben and Julie Bacon from the Orlando, Fla., area led an inspiring praise music time.

There was an excellent spirit as church members worked together to have community involvement. They were happy to welcome their brothers and sisters from Kotzebue, Selawik and Shungnak this year.

Many testified that this was the best Arctic camp meeting they have had for a long time. Members are now laying plans for the next session in Nome, scheduled for Feb. 23–26, 2017. Even so, Alaska members would be thrilled to hold the next Arctic Camp Meeting in the New Jerusalem instead of Nome.