righteousness, peace & joy in the Holy Spirit
Our Lady of the Fields Camp & Retreat Center is under the spiritual guidance and administration of the Chaldean Catholic Eparchy of the United States of America headed by Bishop Francis Kalabat.
Located on 218 acres in Brighton, Michigan, OLF is a community with a mission to bring youth and adults closer to Christ through a Catholic camping experience. From this experience, we envision that our campers and retreatants will take the joy and love they found at camp to become ambassadors for Christ in the world.
OLF strives to fulfill this mission by offering spiritual retreats to Catholic school groups, youth groups, and sports teams throughout Michigan. These retreats can be either day-long or overnight. They can be for co-ed or for single-sex groups. They can be led by our experienced retreat staff or by a group’s own leaders.
In the past, we’ve served groups who are preparing for the sacrament of confirmation, for the experience of an intense spiritual program, such as Kairos, or for a bonding experience by a group of incoming high school freshmen, rising seniors, a staff of teachers, or for a varsity football team. Whatever a group’s spiritual goals are, we’re here to serve.
Our vision is to connect families and communities who share the same core values through a culture centered on Christ and teachings of the Catholic Church.
Our mission is to engage youth. It is to enable generations to encounter Christ through adventurous, faith-based, and nurturing programs utilizing the beautiful environment of God’s great outdoors.
MEET OUR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
The executive director of Our Lady of the Fields is Mr. Michael Hickey. Mr Hickey has been a theology teacher in the Archdiocese of Detroit for more than 30 years. He has taught at St. Francis Cabrini High School, Brother Rice High School, U of D Jesuit High School and is now the campus minister at Marian Catholic High school. From 1991 to 2013, Mr. Hickey also served as the executive director of Camp Sancta Maria, a Catholic summer camp located in Gaylord, Michigan. Mr Hickey has been married for 32 years and has five children.
The Chaldean Catholic Diocese of the United States of America purchased the Detroit Recreation Camp (164 acres) at 1391 Kellogg Rd. in Brighton, Michigan, and changed the name to Camp Chaldean. The diocese purchased the property with money donated from the Shamaya (Sam) Kassab Fund.
Construction of the new St. George Shrine began at Camp Chaldean. The Chaldean Diocese started to run its own summer youth day camps at [location]. This Chaldean Youth Camp became popularly known as “CYC”.
The Chaldean Diocese celebrated the dedication of St. George Shrine on the south shore of Euler Lake at Camp Chaldean. The shrine instantly became an iconic symbol of our community’s dedication to building God’s Kingdom on Earth.
CYC was permanently moved to Camp Chaldean and expanded to offer overnight sessions, as well as continuing its popular day camps. CYC enrollment started to climb dramatically.
Bishop Francis Y. Kalabat renamed Camp Chaldean as Our Lady of the Fields Camp and Retreat Center (OLF) in an effort to open our community to a wider audience. The Camp Oversight committee hired Mr. Michael Hickey to be the first Executive Director of Our Lady of the Fields Camp. Mr. Hickey’s mandate was to start the development of a year-round camp and retreat center that could host thousands of people each year.
OLF opened its gates beyond the Chaldean Community to welcome all people who are looking to grow closer to God and deepen their faith. In an effort to expand the camp’s program, Mr. Hickey oversaw the construction of a high and low ropes course at OLF, which became a hugely successful draw for Catholic youth and school groups in the area.
Albeit slowly at first, Catholic youth groups and school groups from the Archdiocese of Detroit and the Diocese of Lansing started visiting Our Lady of the Fields for retreats.
The number of spiritual and recreational retreats hosted by OLF continued to grow steadily. Catholic high school sports teams began holding their pre-season training camps at OLF. CYC participation also set new records. OLF’s reputation as an exciting and new Catholic retreat center started to spread.
For the first time, OLF hosted retreat groups in every month of the calendar year! The camp oversight committee, along with Mr. Hickey, started to lay out an ambitious plan for growth that included building more camper cabins, adding more programs, and restoring the older buildings on camp grounds. OLF entered into a strategic partnership with Damascus from the Columbus (Ohio) diocese. Starting in June of 2023, Damascus will hold 8 one-week sessions of their very popular Catholic Youth Summer Camp at OLF. Camper enrollment is expected to be 150 children per session – or 1,200 boys and girls for the entire summer! In September of 2022, The Chaldean Diocese purchased a 54-acre parcel of property directly across the street from St. George Shrine on Kellogg Rd. This parcel will be used for future development and expansion of OLF. This purchase increased the size of OLF to 218 acres.