Rev. Raymond R. Hicks
(Former District Superintendent, Georgia District of the Wesleyan Church; Camp Evangelist in 1977,1984, and 1990)
Memories. Memories come to mind as I reflect on the "Old Camp Ground" and the many times I sat under the tabernacle, on the platform, then to the dining hall to feed both soul and body.
I believe my first time to Hortense I stopped at the well pump, held the handle, pumped several times - no water came forth. Someone passing by said, "Pour some water into the pump to prime it." I did and then - water. My first lesson learned at Hortense.
As I recall, as I came near the sleeping rooms, I saw two ladies sitting in rockers. The one with the lovely white hair was Sister Lewis, the other was Sister Hodge. Their friendly greeting and the Saintly feeling that came over me told me I was at home in Christian Fellowship.
I recall one night I was to preach. I was just in the beginning part of the message using the Scripture, "God knows who are His," when one of those summer storms of thunder etc. suddenly came. A clap of thunder, a flash of lightning, (I suppose I'll never know if God was saying, "Amen" to what was being said or "close your mouth." I think it was the latter as the people scattered and the meeting was over.) He spoke much louder than I and said much more in His wonders of nature than I could say.
Acts 2:17 states, "old men dream dreams." I am in the dreaming age. I was born ten years after Hortense Camp started. I will be 90 years old as you celebrate your 100 years of camp. Only eternity will tell of the good and the great resulting from the 100 years' camp meeting services at Hortense Camp Meeting.
As I recall the Saints of yesterday and today, my heart warms at the thought of seeing them again at the Great Homecoming Camp Meeting in the air. May God's very best be with all the dear people of Hortense. Greetings and Love to all.