This year Paul and Jocelyn Shutte celebrate 25 years managing Teapot Valley Christian Camp just south of Nelson.
Current and past staff, board members, trustees, family, friends and the wider Christian Camping family joined together at a surprise celebration dinner on 3 November to congratulate Paul and Jocelyn for their commitment, perseverance, and Christian service to the Christian Camping ministry at Teapot Valley. Paul and Jocelyn were presented with a ‘memories book’ of contributions from former colleagues and friends and sent on a much-deserved weekend away.
CEO of Christian Camping NZ, Jenni Davies, thanked Paul for his contribution to Christian Camping NZ:
“Thank you Paul for your contribution to CCNZ, your time as chairman was significant as we moved forward into being a strong Association of members camps… Your servant heart and quiet wisdom has been so valuable… We have admired the way you have lead and grown your own Camping Ministry and Teapot Valley while still supporting CCNZ… Jocelyn, they say that behind every good man is an extraordinary woman, you have been that woman, supporting Paul in many areas of this ministry you were both called to.”
When Paul and Jocelyn arrived in October 1994 the camp was valued at around $1m and they had about three staff. Over the past 25 years many large buildings and development projects have been completed; including a gymnasium with fully sprung wooden floor, a dining room extension and new administration block, a new staff house, four new ensuite cabins, a new ablution block, a new septic system and soak fields, swimming pool changing rooms, a new workshop and storage sheds!
“We are about to commence a replacement building,” says Shirlene Spencer from Teapot Valley Christian Camp, “This is going to be the new central hub for the group leaders/staff/teachers who come to stay at camp.” The new facility will contain six ensuite bedrooms, a large social lounge area, and significant outdoor seating and deck areas. “Funding this $300 000 project has been made possible through great financial stewardship by Paul, as well as generous financial support from Lichfield Lands.”
This last year Teapot Valley Christian Camp hosted 108 groups, had 6336 people stay a total of 12071 nights, prepared 32131 meals, and survived a bush fire!
Paul and Jocelyn have developed Teapot Valley Christian Camp into a treasure enjoyed by thousands every year. 25 years on and the camp is now valued at $6.5 million and employs eight full-time staff and several part-time staff. But more than the physical legacy, Paul and Jocelyn have allowed God’s Spirit to move and change lives, as the treasure of eternal life has been passed to hundreds (if not thousands) of others during their term as managers.
If you or your church is interested in visiting Teapot Valley Christian Camp, see their website: www.teapotvalley.co.nz