TALIHINA—Nestled in the western edge of the rolling hills of the Winding Stair Mountains in southeastern Oklahoma, Kiamichi Baptist Assembly (KBA) provides a sanctuary for campers. The camp is owned and operated by Oklahoma Baptists churches of five associations—Atoka-Coal, Frisco, LeFlore, Pittsburg and Sans Bois.
Founded in 1942, KBA has grown from a brush arbor meeting area, tent camping, and outdoor cooking to one of the largest associational camps in the country. The outdoor tabernacle seats more than 1,500. Individual churches and associations own more than 40 cabins on site. Jay Baker serves as camp manager. He and his wife, Martha, have served for 22 years.
“KBA is a vibrant, smaller camp. It is unapologetically evangelistic,” Baker said. “Every attendee participates in activities throughout the week, including a ropes course, archery, canoeing and kayaking, a ga-ga ball pit, volleyball, organized sports and a huge waterslide. No one is excluded. Because it’s a small camp, no one gets lost in the shuffle. Everyone gets to know each other. It’s really special.”
This year’s schedule provided eight camps—two children; five youth; and the Choctaw Chickasaw Family Camp. Each camp was filled with music, devotional times, recreation and worship services in the outdoor pavilion.
“This is our first time to come to KBA,” explained Henryetta, First Youth Pastor Adam Lollis. “We brought 22 students; most have never been to church camp. We wanted a smaller, more intimate setting. We love it here! We expect to see souls saved and lives changed. Kids today go through so much. God can bring healing and restoration. We believe they will leave here changed!”
Red Oak, First students attend camp annually. “We love KBA,” said Pastor Johnny Montgomery. “KBA is a special place—a Christ-centered camp. The setting is beautiful. God always shows up ‘BIG’ at each camp. I was saved at 19 at KBA. It changed my life. I know firsthand how God can use this camp to change lives forever. Our students—both children and youth—anticipate summer camp each year. Jay and Martha gather a great team of KBA summer staffers. It’s a loving place where campers can relax in the beautiful mountain setting and experience one-on-one the glory of God. God continues to bless KBA beyond expectations!”
Youth Week Two featured music by the Dustin Searles Band. Searles is the pastor of mobilization and college at Durant, First.
“We just want to glorify the Lord,” Searles said. “He has given us a passion and desire to worship Jesus and lead people to Jesus Christ.” The band is available for camps and youth retreats. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Blake Gideon, senior pastor of Edmond, First, brought messages centered on “Engaging the Mind.” Gideon was saved at 24 when he realized that salvation was not about going through religious motions. Instead, salvation involves a total surrender of one’s life to Christ as Savior and Lord.
“God is doing tremendous things at KBA,” Gideon said. “KBA is a phenomenal camp. God has shown His blessings and favor on camp. It is an honor to come and preach here.”
For more information about KBA, contact Jay Baker at KBA1942@yahoo.com