It was a bitter cold Easter morning, and we were all sleeping in tents. I had decided to accompany a group of young women to the South Rim of Grand Canyon for the Easter Sunrise service.

The visitors’ center was extremely organized, and shuttle buses started very early to pick up cold, tired people to take them to the Mather Point overlook. When we arrived, we stood in the cold as a choir assembled out on the point.

As dawn finally approached, we were all anxious, and it happened very rapidly. It was the kind of thing a person sees once in a lifetime.

It seemed like the sun rose right from the bottom of the Grand Canyon to come in to our view as an enormous ball of orange. The moment was definitely breathtaking, making my heart beat with intensity. At the same time, the choir sang “Christ the Lord is Risen Today”. After a short non-denominational service was held, we all quietly went back to our camps. Then, we had a short time for personal meditation.

As you know, I am an avid camper. This experience ranks as my greatest renewal of faith. You cannot leave without the knowledge that there is truly a heavenly being who could create such awe and beauty.

Duty to God is part of the Boy Scout Oath. If God created the heavens and the earth, does not every scout deserve to really observe that beauty?  I realize it is only January, but as time flies, Easter is just around the corner. You could make Easter on April 16 a time for special Scouting or family memories.

Although it might be too late to reserve group camping for troops, it most certainly is worth a try. There are also Scout camps open year round.

Consider reserving space to use as a family camping event. Thousands of people attend from all over the world. One reminder: bring warm clothes and shoes, so you can fully appreciate the wonder of God’s glory. The South Rim visitors center is open all year, and the North Rim opens in May.

Joyce Olesen
is a grandmother, mother, and daughter of Scouters. She love kids, camping, country music and sport cars. Her Dad was a Scout leader in Chicago in the early 1920’s and having only daughters did not bolster his Scouting hopes. As his "Scout" she was tying regulation knots by the time she was 7.

One comment

  1. Darryl Alder
    Darryl Alder says:

    Joyce what a great memory. I did something similar a couple of times at Zion Canyon. There is something breathtaking and filled with God’s grandeur as the sun first appears over red rock and Navajo white sandstone.

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