St. Joseph's Family Camp For Catholics Living With Disabilities

9:00 a

Register Below! 

What is this? 

The Diocese of Winona-Rochester is offering a “Camp Day” for Catholic families that have a son or daughter (of any age, including adult) with disabilities. This Camp Day, at Ironwood Springs Christian Ranch in Stewartville, is an opportunity for summer faith formation and fun for the whole family. Mass, faith formation, and activities will be tailored to people living with a wide variety of abilities. Ironwood Springs is designed as an open access camp space and is very accessible, with adaptive activities, grounds, bathrooms, and lunch space and food.

Our Camp Day chaplain for 2024 will be Fr. William Thompson, Vicar General for the Diocese. We also have two Servidoras* sisters coming to support faith formation activities . Katie Netzel is the camp coordinator this year, and the camp is supported by the Director of Life, Marriage & Family, Peter Martin, and the Director of Missionary Discipleship, Susan Windley-Daoust.

*Servants of the Lord & the Virgin of Matará, also known as the IVE Sisters.

Why St. Joseph? 

St. Joseph is the patron of families, and St. Joseph of Cupertino is one of the patron saints of people living with disabilities! We honor both!

What can we expect? 

Fun, faith, and friendship in a supportive and welcoming environment.

The working schedule for the day is as follows:

8:30-9am check in

9:15am Sunday Mass in the Chapel

10:00am-Noon Adaptive zipline open, as well as family activity options (listed below)

Noon: Lunch (provided by Ironwood Springs; food preparation space provided for special diet considerations as needed) and Friendship Building Activities

1pm: Tractor Pull, other family activity options

2pm: Ongoing family activity options, faith formation in the Chapel space

3pm: Closing gathering with the Servidoras

4pm: Final blessing and close of day

Family Activity options may include: Tractor Pull, Adaptive Zipline, Fishing, Swimming, Petting Zoo/Horse Painting, Arts and Crafts, Music, Friendship Building and more!

Who can come?

This camp day is open to any family that has a son/daughter living with a disability (cognitive disabilities,  physical disabilities, or on the autism spectrum). Although the entire family does not have to attend, we encourage it: we want this day to be a renewal day for the whole family! If the entire family cannot attend, we do ask that your child with disabilities, whether young or adult, has an adult (18+) family member with him or her. If your child (regardless of age) wants to bring a PCA in addition to this family member, that is allowed, but that person needs to be VIRTUS trained two weeks in advance. We may have VIRTUS-trained volunteers present who can be an additional support for families in attendance; please let us know if you hope for that additional support on the registration form.

First preference is given to families that belong to parishes in the Diocese of Winona-Rochester. If you are not a member of a DOWR parish, you will be put on a waitlist.

How much does this cost?

The cost of this Camp Day is generously covered by the Catholic Foundation of Southern Minnesota and other benefactors. We will accept free will donations onsite. We do have a limit of participants (75) this year. If you are interested, please register below! 

Questions should be directed to Katie Netzel at . We hope you can come!

Download the poster here.

Download the information sheet here.