The annual camp – Flame! 2019, with the theme “Go, set the world on fire!” for the Form 3 classes, was held at the Catholic Memorial and Pilgrimage Centre (CMPC) Mount Singai, from 10 to 12 October 2019.
We arrived at the foot of the mountain at 9.00 am. In order to reach the campsite, we had to climb up about 300 steps through the 14 Stations of the Cross, which commemorate the journey of Jesus Christ to crucifixion. Besides having to carry our own weight up the mountain, we also had to bear the weight of our baggage and camp equipment. Although the climb was tiring, it gave us an opportunity to appreciate the beauty of nature.
Upon arrival at our respective dorms, we were assigned with different tasks to clean up the place. After that, we gathered at the chapel and listened to a talk by Mr Benedict in order to gain deeper insights on this year’s theme, “Go, set the world on fire”. We were reminded to keep an attitude of generosity, mindfulness and gratitude throughout the camp. Then, we were divided into 10 groups, comprising students from all five classes, to plan a performance or an activity for the following night. All of us showed much of our enthusiasm when we did our group cheer. In the late afternoon, we had our Ultimate Race, where we had to compete against time with other groups in a few outdoor activities. Throughout the race, we learnt that values of teamwork, patience and cooperation are important in order for us to be able to complete the challenges successfully. In the end, the winner of the race was Group 7 and they received a prize of 3 durians!
That night, everyone gathered at the amphitheatre for our next activity, which was the night walk. We had to walk around the camping grounds in a long line while having one of our five senses removed, by being blindfolded. Many of us shrieked and laughed along the way, and it was evident that we had utmost fun throughout this activity despite being afraid of the unknown. Through this activity, we had learnt to be more mindful and caring towards others, and these important lessons learnt were to be practised and applied in the upcoming activities the next day.
On the second morning of the camp, we started off with a morning stretch and a prayer led by Br Erone. After breakfast, we were given a briefing on the main activity for the day. About 100 students were to hike up to the summit of the mountain while the other group of students were to journey down the mountain to carry bricks and building materials up for further construction of the facilities of the centre. The hike up the mountain was strenuous as we had to hike on uneven grounds and steep slopes. Despite encountering many dangerous obstacles, we still managed to conquer the mountain and needless to say, it was definitely a proud moment for all of us. We forgot about our weariness as we gazed at the breath-taking view from the summit.
At night, we gathered at the amphitheatre for the Liturgy of the Light. Each of us was given a candle as a significant symbol for us to keep the flame within us burning and to share the light with the people around us. At last, the most long-awaited activity of the camp took place, which was “The Flame! Camp Night”. Although there were some rough patches at the end of the activity, we still had fun and were greatly entertained by the performances, skits, sketches and games by each group.
Finally, the time came for the students to bid farewell to the camp. We gathered at the chapel for our last Mass before having our breakfast. After that, we gathered at the amphitheatre for a photo taking session. Everyone put on their brightest smiles although they felt heavy hearted as the camp was coming to an end. Besides doing some journaling, we also wrote a note to our parents to express our feelings towards them. Many tears were shed and it was definitely a very heart-warming and touching moment. As soon as we finished our lunch, we went to clean up the dormitories, amphitheatre, toilets and the dining hall, ensuring the place was spick and span.
At about 1.15 pm, we began our journey home by descending the mountain. When we reached the foot of the mountain, we boarded the bus which took us back to school for a short session with our parents. This officially marked the end of “ Flame! 2019.”
All in all, the camp was an eye-opening experience for all of us as we certainly did step out of our comfort zones. We will forever have all the memories and lessons learnt carved in our hearts, as this camp had really allowed us to build relationships and bond with each other, as well as strengthening our relationship with God, so that we may be able to share the light that God has lit within us with all the people around us.
• Fayth Lee (F3A)