Native American Ministries Sunday

The relationship between Native American people and Christianity is a complicated one. Part of the process of healing and reconciliation is to learn about history and culture. It is also important to know that Native spirituality and Christianity are not mutually exclusive. On Sunday, April 14 at 10:30 a.m. at Camp Milan Retreat Center, there will be a worship service sponsored by two United Methodist Churches that honors Native American Ministries Sunday.

Portions of the offering at this service will go to fund scholarships, help people in native reservations, and fund ministries in Illinois specifically allocated for Native American ministries. The service will be led by retired United Methodist pastor Rev. Dan Lybarger, who is of Cherokee and Ojibwe descent.

Lybarger is a Native American historian, storyteller, and flute player. He is a retired United Methodist Elder who served many years as the pastor for Native American Fellowship Dayspring Church in East Peoria. Dayspring is a unique faith community in that they are centered on the gospel of Christ, but their worship include flute playing, drum circles, dance, and other traditional native customs. Lybarger knows there is great potential for such an expression of Christianity in the Quad Cities area.

Organizers hope that this Sunday will be the first step in a more sustained effort to minister to people of native American descent. Pastor Lisa Wiedman of Trinity United Methodist Church in Milan will be a part of the service. She is of Cherokee descent and will share Communion with indigenous elements.

“Black Hawk is all over the Quad Cities. It a college, a hotel, a bank, a park, historic site. You can’t go far through the Quad Cities without running into something recalls the leader who once dwelt in this land. How many people however, know much about the man?” wondered Pastor Robb McCoy of Two Rivers United Methodist Church, one of the hosting churches.

McCoy will take a back seat in the service, allowing the other leaders to teach and share their faith from their indigenous perspective. He will share his findings from local historians as well as his research into the local history and some insight he has found from reading books like The Autobiography of Black Hawk.

After the 10:30 a.m. worship service, there will be a pot-luck picnic. Everyone is invited to bring a dish to share. There is refrigeration and electricity at the site to keep dishes either hot or cold until the 12:00 lunch. The service and picnic will be outside under the covered pavilion unless there is inclement weather. If there is rain, everything can be moved inside to the retreat center.

Information and a map to Camp Milan can be found at The street address is 12905 13th Street in rural Milan, south of the main town, off of route 67.

Birdies for Camp Milan

By using Birdie #2399 – Two Rivers UMC Camp Milan Retreat Center you can direct your pledge to Camp Milan. If you have ever been a guest at Camp Milan, so you know what a special place it is. You also know that there are many ways that we can improve the quality of the facility and make sure that Camp Milan continues to thrive for years to come. You can donate online by CLICKING HERE.

Pledges received in the Birdies for Charity office before June 16 will be entered into a grand prize drawing. You can win a new Lexus! All pledges must be received by July 7.

After all the pledges are made, Birdies for Charity will then send us a check with all of the gifts with at least 5% added. So your $100 gift to Birdies will come to Camp Milan as $105. So please, consider supporting Camp Milan Meeting and Retreat Center, and call Brianna at 309-788-9384 to make a reservation for your next event.

Church Picnic

On August 5, 2022 we will have a Church Picnic at Camp Milan. Everyone is invited to this celebration. The Methodist Men will help grill hamburgers, hot dogs, and provide lemonade. Everyone is invited to bring a dish to share. 

Dinner will be served at 6:00 p.m., so please come a little early to make sure your dish is available to share. After dinner, we will have games for kids of all ages, including bean-bag toss, basketball, and other carnival games. There will be a campfire for s’mores too!

Bring a lawn chair if you want to enjoy the “Movie Under the Stars” at 8:30 p.m. We will show a classic family-friendly movie on the big screen hanging from the pavilion a few minutes after sunset (which is 8:15 p.m.).

After the movie we will have a kids and youth lock-in. Kids must be registered before the night of the event to sleep over. They should bring their own bedding and toiletries.

6:00 Dinner under the pavilion

8:30 Family Movie Under the Stars

11:00 Youth Lock-In begins in the Retreat Center

11:00 a.m. Lock-In ends and parents pick up.


A hard copy of a signed medical release form is also required.

Youth Retreat at Camp Milan

20-Hour YAROn April 22-23, Camp Milan Retreat Center will host the 2nd 20-Hour YAR (Youth Annual Retreat). This event is sponsored by the Illinois Great Rivers Conference Camping Ministries. All youth in grades 7-12 are invited to this 20-hour retreat.

The event will feature speaker Rev. Sarah Renfro and music by My Anchor Holds. For more information, and for registration, go to the IGRC Website.