News has swept through the nation of the devastating fire at the 146 year old Alton Bay Christian Conference Center on Easter.  As we are still trying to comprehend the impact this disaster will have on all concerned.

I have a long-time family heritage that includes attending campmeetings.   I enjoyed many of my childhood and adult years at camp learning about Christ, as did my relatives before me for many generations as well as my own children.  I was baptised in the cove at campmeeting when I was 10 years old.  My grandmother and then parents owned a cottage at the Tremont Advent Christian Campground in Marion, MA (Cape Cod) where I have enjoyed countless seasons.

But the other campmeeting in my family history is at Alton Bay, NH (Lake Winnipesaukeee).  My great-great grandfather, A. E. Walton, was a preacher there. My great-great grandparents, Currier, also had a cottage at Alton Bay.  My great-aunt Marion was staying with grandmother Currier at Alton bay when the 1945 fire broke out and 1,000 people were forced to flee.  The family cottage was among the many homes destroyed.

It is hard to understand why things like this happen.  We live in a fallen world and random occurrences like this do happen.  The Destroyer continually tries to reap havoc on this earth.   Yet God never wastes our sorrows or the tragedies of our lives (Romans 8:28).  We must keep this formost in our minds.   He is in the business of salvation and restoration.  None of that has changed.

My heart goes out to all of those who have lost so much in this fire.  I’m so grateful that lives were not lost.  Hopefully there will be a chance to rebuild.

Alton Bay Christian Conference Center

News Links:

Alton conflagration: Up to 50 buildings burn, 40 fire departments respond

Wind-whipped fire tears through landmark conference center

Alton Bay residents lament an ‘awful day’

Owners Call on Faith after Christian Center Fire

Alton Fire Damage in the Millions

In aftermath, a time for thanks


SLIDESHOW – 14 alarm fire tears through Alton Bay campground

VIDEO – fire
VIDEO – fire and aftermath

Alton Bay Christian Conference Center History:

Alton Bay Campmeeting History

Photo Gallery

Photo Gallery 2

1945 fire photo

Landmarks and Legacies