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Summer Camping Programs

Children, youth need camp now more than ever


Lutherhaven director Bob Baker believes children and youth “need camp more than ever,” because they “need to be outdoors, be in relationship and form their Christian faith.”

Wake boarding at Lutherhaven
Wake boarding is one of many water activities at Lutherhaven.

“Camp gets kids outdoors,” he said. “Kids rarely play outdoors.  They sit in front of screens.  Studies say they play outdoors just four minutes a day.”

Campers build relationships with each other and with young adult Christian mentors.

“With young people spending eight hours in front of screens, they don’t have much time for relationships.  Kids spend just six minutes a day in meaningful conversation with an adult,” Bob said. 

Lutherhaven numbers are up 10 percent this year. About a third of campers are Lutheran, a third from other churches and a third are unchurched and may be hearing about Jesus for the first time.

This year their staff of 70 from all over the United States will immerse themselves in servant leadership for 10 weeks, guiding activities around the theme, “Unvanquished,” from Romans 8: “Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Jesus.”

This summer, Lutherhaven begins the second of three phases on a new retreat center, adding 18 motel-like six-person rooms with private baths to house 70 for year-round retreats, camps for children, youth, adults and families.  It provides more comfort and expanded retreat programming.

Lutherhaven on the western shore of Lake Coeur d’Alene has 225 beds.  They also operate Shoshone Mountain Retreat and Ranch, an hour east of Coeur d’Alene, with 130 beds. 

Lutherhaven’s Idaho Servant Adventure offers teens and adults from church youth groups across the nation opportunities to experience the outdoors and engage in community outreach at 75 sites.  This summer 550 teens will give about 9,000 hours of service.

Bob said more congregations come to camp as groups, with children, youth, some parents, and the pastor or youth leader.  They find the “tribe camps,” as they’re called, help build significant faith-forming relationships.

Lutherhaven provides camps for other groups each summer—the Idaho Army National Guard, the Washington Air National Guard, the North Idaho Catholic Youth Camp and Hospice.

For information, call 208-667-3459 or visit

Copyright © June 2015 - The Fig Tree