Gone Camping — Part III


Tim Singler of Old College continues our reporting from the annual seminarian camp: Deer Porte has been going really well and has been an excellent way to transition into the school year. Rather than jumping from home right into school, camp has allowed us to get back into the rhythm of community life. Within the last few days, we have had a number of activities that have been building a stronger sense of community among us, including the seemingly constant games of bean bag toss.

Bean bag toss at DeerPorte

Saturday night we had a panel presentation on Holy Cross heroes. Fr. Rich Bullene, CSC, Fr. Bill Melody, CSC, and Br. Rodney Struble, CSC, all shared stories about some of the men in Holy Cross who have inspired them in their religious life and priesthood. The biggest laugh certainly goes to Fr. Bill Melody who shared about how Servant of God Fr. Patrick Peyton, CSC, came up to talk to him about a vocation while Bill was talking with a girl he was interested in. By the time Fr. Peyton was done talking, the girl was gone!

Following their talk, the cafeteria was transformed into the Red Dolphin Casino. Tables were setup for different card games such as blackjack and poker. We use “CSC money” which looks like a form of Monopoly money but with a Holy Cross flavor to it. We had a great sense of competition to earn the most money because the top five money winners would enter into the final round of Texas Hold’em. I unfortunately did not earn near enough what was required to enter into that final round. My measly amount of a few thousand dollars did not match up to the millions of dollars that other seminarians collected at some stations that tripled your money with excellent odds. Regardless of the outcome, the competition was fun and everyone, even those who did not win, had a great time.

Casino night at DeerPorte

The biggest catch the next day went to my fellow Old Collegian J.P. MacPherson who won the fishing derby on the ponds on the La Porte property. J.P., though, also had the distinction of catching the smallest fish as well!

Fishing derby at DeerPorte

On Sunday night, deacons to be Paul Ybarra, C.S.C., and John Britto, C.S.C., gave the annual deacon talk, sharing their vocation stories and imparting a bit of wisdom they have learned along the way. Both were inspiring!

On Monday, we had our free day. One group decided to stay here at Deer Porte and had a relaxing day by the pool. Another group went into downtown Chicago and saw many interesting sites, including Holy Name Cathedral and various stores, and then finished with dinner at Giordano’s. The last group, which was the one that I joined, went to the dunes. After spending some time on the beach in Indiana, we eventually made our way to Mt. Baldy, one of the highest sand dunes in the area. It was a wonderful day spent at the beach, with beautiful weather and all.

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