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Sacred Playgrounds: The Book

This quick, impactful read lays foundation for effective ministry. Sacred Playgrounds explores the wisdom of camping ministry for Christian education and faith formation, examining its rich history and fundamental characteristics with compelling stories, groundbreaking research, and theological grounding. This is the culmination and summation of much of the work done at Sacred Playgrounds, incorporating data from the Effective Camp Project and the Confirmation Project, alongside stories from camps in multiple Christian traditions. The insight and evidence presented in this book demonstrate that the contributions of camping ministry must be taken seriously among scholars, Christian educators, and ministry professionals.

“There is no doubt that camping ministry has played a major role in the faith formation of Protestant churches over the last hundred years. And yet there has been little to no rich theoretical and theological reflection on camping ministry. That is, until now. Jacob Sorenson in Sacred Playgrounds offers us all a gift. With whimsical writing, rigorous research, and penetrating theological reflection, Sorenson provides a practical theology of camping ministry. This book is essential for anyone concerned with faith formation who seeks to understand and sharpen the ministry of camps.”


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Thanks so much for everything you all do! I recently read Sacred Playgrounds and I absolutely loved it. I think it confirms a lot of the “hunches” camp people have had for a long time, but backs them up with hard data. We’re definitely going to be making some changes this summer because of it. So thanks again!

Taylor Mugge

Summer Ministries Manager, Hidden Acres Christian Center


Effective Camp

Research on camp effectiveness

Holy Ground

Summer staff guide and devotional

Rhythms of Faith

Camp as catalyst for family faith

Camp Builds

The lasting impact of working at camp

Camp & Church Leadership

Camp staff and church leader research


The Episcopal Church Leadership Project

How We Help Camp Thrive

Research & Insights

Turning numbers into stories

Staff & Leader Support

Aligned, equipped, energized leaders


Camp Store

Resources, downloads, and camp swag

The Podcast

Behind the mic, behind the research

Articles & Resources

The latest from sacred playgrounds like yours

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