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It was a hot afternoon in July 2020, five months after the first stay-at-home orders issued in New Jersey had forced residents to shelter in place. Cherry Oakley, moderator of the Presbytery of New Brunswick, was thinking hard in the front seat of her car. She lamented the racial and economic injustice laid bare by the pandemic.
Thanks to a half-dozen gap year staff members, all recent high school graduates, and Patrick Alfieri, an intrepid emerging leading intern, more than 400 children and youth with ties to Johnsonburg Camp and Retreat Center in the northwest corner of New Jersey are celebrating Advent through Advent kits lovingly and thoughtfully prepared and distributed by the camp’s seven staffers.