Dayspring Bible Camp

Dayspring Newsletter

2023 Year-End Review

“2024”…that has a bit of an odd ring to it doesn’t it?

I sat and pondered that – thinking to myself, “Is it possible that it has been nearly 1/4 century since all of humanity would be placed into a tailspin when the calendar turned its final page into the next Millennium at Y2K (2000)?”  While much has changed over the last 24 years, one thing that remains the same is the faithfulness of our God!  While there is much to speak about in regard to the changes at Dayspring Bible Camp (and I will get into that shortly), one thing that remains steadfast is the message of the Gospel – The Good News of Jesus Christ and his substitutionary death on a cross.  He came from heaven to Earth, lived a sinless life and took upon himself our sin and paid a debt that no man/sinner could pay.  He gave his life for us and in turn, he paved a way for salvation that comes only through faith in that finished work on the cross.  John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”  No works, no rituals, no amount of “me”…it is by faith alone.  Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”  We serve an amazing God!

While our God never changes, and while the Gospel remains the same, I am pleased to say that the same cannot be said for the campgrounds and program at Dayspring Bible Camp.  It’s during this time of year that we take a moment and reflect back at what the Lord has done over the last year and marvel at his goodness and wonder, “is it possible that all of this has taken place in 12 months?”  Many people often pose the following four questions to me when we speak about Dayspring:

1) What changes are going on at camp? 
2) What are your plans for the future?
3) Can you please keep me informed/updated?
4) What are the needs of Dayspring and how can I help?  

This letter is an attempt to answer each of these questions (in a brief manner) and to tell you about some exciting ways that we are hoping to keep each one of you more informed as we go into 2024 and beyond.

Question 1 – What changes are going on at camp?

While the work that has taken please in the last 12 months is too extensive to go into detail in one short letter, here is a brief list of some of the recent updates:

  • Newly built canteen with deck
  • Newly built cabin 7 (with wrap-around deck)
  • Completely renovated cabins 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 (including decks)
  • Extensive excavation of the road behind the upper cabins and gym
  • Ventilation fans in the gym
  • New culverts under the road leading to the gym
  • Addition of 4 RV sites on the North side of the basketball court
  • Replacement of ceiling fans in the rec-hall
  • Addition of commercial fans in the dining hall and girls’ bathhouse
  • Rebuilding of steps to the fishing dock
  • Expansion of internet coverage throughout all of the campground
  • Painting of the boy’s bathhouse to match the updated cabins
  • New electric service in the workshop
  • New electric to all cabins on the hill (8-14)
  • Renovation of the camp staff house
  • New camp office
  • Exterior renovation of cabin 4

Not all changes are structural. In addition to the projects above, the Lord blessed us with a new addition in 2023 – Many of you are aware that Dayspring welcomed the Dyer family in March of this year. Caleb, Tina and their three children (Abby, Grant, and Isaac) joined Dayspring full time and moved to the Staff house in late March. The Dyers have proven to be a blessing to everyone who they come in contact with and share in the common goal of sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ to a lost world. In upcoming communications, look for more about the Dyers’ background as well as their day to day activities at Dayspring.

Question 2 – What are your plans for the future?

Proverbs 16:9 – “A man’s heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.”  As we look ahead to 2024 and beyond, we continually look to the Lord to ensure that we are asking for His wisdom in regard to our plans for the camp (both programs and facilities).  While keeping this in the forefront, the plans for the upcoming year include the following:

  • Interior renovation of cabins 2 and 15 (including their bathrooms)
  • Renovation of the cooks cabin
  • Renovation of Cabin 8 (including bathroom)
  • Sealing and striping of the basketball/volleyball court as well as the addition of lighting
  • Rewiring the mess hall and office
  • Insulating the ceiling of the dining hall and chapel
  • Construction of a quadplex staff cabin (including bathrooms).
  • Addition of an overnight “young teens” week of camp

Question 3 – Can you please keep me informed/updated?

One goal we have this upcoming year (and going forward) is to keep you better informed on what is going on at Dayspring.  Information is available in multiple forms but we will be making a concerted effort to deliver this information in a more timely and efficient manner than in the past.  Going forward, our plans are to send out monthly newsletters with information on what is going on at camp, highlight interesting stories, provide photos and tell each and every one of you how you can be involved.  If you or someone you know would like to be added to the newsletter distribution list, please send an email to: [email protected] and place a note in the subject line or body of the email stating, “Please add me to the your distribution list.”  If you have multiple emails that you would like to add to the list, please provide those in the body of the email and we will be happy to add them.  In addition to these emails, you can also keep an eye out on our Facebook page for regular updates.  For general information about camp, photos, etc you can also visit our main camp page.

As a special kick-off to 2024, be on the look-out for an eight part series titled, “Reflections & Projections” as each week we reflect back on one change from 2023 while we look ahead to a planned change/project in 2024.

Question 4 – What are the needs of Dayspring and how can I help?

This may be the most important question of all as there is an exciting component to it…YOU!  There are a number of ways that you can help with the ministry at Dayspring:

  1. Pray for Dayspring!  While the plans of men are many, they are nothing if the Lord is not leading the way.  I would ask that you keep Dayspring continually in your prayers.  Pray for safety.  Pray for children to come.  Pray for strong and mature staff.  Pray for good speakers.  Pray that ears and eyes would be opened to the words of the speakers and counselors.  Pray for energy and endurance.  Pray for unity.  Pray for the parents of those that entrust their children to us.  Pray….and then pray some more!
  2. Consider joining us at Dayspring.  I have often said that what I love about camp ministry is that there are few places where children have the opportunity to be detached from all of the craziness of the world for a full week and to be immersed in the Word of God.  Camp provides a place for the Good News of salvation to go out and the Lord continues to use Dayspring Bible Camp to bring lost souls to him.  Part of the Lord using the camp for this is the Lord using YOU for this!  At Dayspring, there is no shortage of opportunities to get involved and be a part of the Lord’s work.  Whether you are interested in counseling, cooking, building, discipling, nursing, or simply serving…there is a place for you!  If you can come for the full week, GREAT!  If you can come and cook for two days…GREAT.  If you can come down on Friday to help clean and prep the camp for the next week…GREAT!  Praise the Lord for those that have the desire to serve and I would challenge and encourage each of you to consider how you might be part of this ministry.
  3. Send your children to Dayspring and/or tell others.  A large portion of this letter has been dedicated to providing updates on the “physical” upgrades at camp. While these items are critical to the ministry at Dayspring, they pale in comparison to the Spiritual happenings at camp.  Our ultimate goal at Dayspring is to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with a lost world as well as to disciple those that have come to know Christ as their Savior and to help deepen their relationship with him.  The common thread in that mission is 1) the Lord, 2) the Staff, and 3) the campers.  I encourage you to reach out to your friends and families, kids you may know, young adults and families and invite them to attend one of the several camps that Dayspring offers.  For the summer of 2024, those camps include:
    • Arcadia Valley Daycamp (June 17-21)
    • Fredericktown Daycamp (June 24 – 28)
    • Jr. Camp (Overnight) (July 7 – 12)
    • Jr. High Camp (Overnight) (July 14 – 19)
    • Sr. Camp (Overnight) (July 21 – 26)

      For those interested in family camp, consider checking out Ozark Family Camp, Week 1 (Saturday, July 27 – Friday, August 2).  For more information go to
  4. Consider partnering with Dayspring financially.  We often get the question…How much does camp cost? Cost…Every camp has a cost, right? Well, Yes, Dayspring Bible Camp has costs…food, sporting good supplies, replacing things that wear out (Not everything lasts as long as our 100 year old cabins…. But even they need a makeover at times), utilities, and many other things. (Not the staff–they willingly and joyfully volunteer). While we do have costs – some of which can be significant at times – we do not set a charge for campers to attend, knowing that some can’t afford to pay, while some can, but not very much. We trust in our God to move the hearts of those campers (and parents) who can contribute, and also the hearts of many people who have experienced the life-changing impact of Dayspring over the past 75+ years. All contributions are voluntary.  The counties surrounding camp are some of the poorest in the state of Missouri and without the help of donations, many of the children that do come to camp would not be able to do so.  The board of directors at Dayspring believes that the financial hardship in these children’s lives should not create a barrier to them coming to camp and hearing the Gospel and we rely on the Lord to provide as he sees fit.

    We know that our God has infinitely deep pockets! He has provided in many amazing ways in the past and will continue to remain faithful.  If you are able to share in the cost it takes to run Dayspring, we appreciate your willingness and desire to do so.  If interested, there are two ways that you can give:

    Option 1 – By Check:
    P.O. Box 470
    Union, MO; 63084

    Option 2 – Online:

For those of you that haven’t been to Dayspring recently, I would encourage you to come and see what the Lord is doing.  Feel free to reach out by email ( or phone (my cell – 314-488-6708 or my wife Nicole – 314-488-0489) if you would like to take a look.  If you are interested in an overnight stay or even a rental, we can accommodate you as well.  Thank you to each one of you that has played a part in Dayspring over the years.  As he always is, the Lord was good to us in 2023 and we look forward to seeing his mighty hand at work in the upcoming year.  To each of you and your families, I pray that you had a very Merry Christmas and I wish a happy New Year! 
Thanks be to God for his indescribable Gift!

Kent Stiles

On behalf of the board of directors, Dayspring Bible Camp

Date Issued: 1/5/2024
Sent via email and posted on Facebook