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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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In the wilderness

City youth open up at the camp Ham Muus founded

It all started in 1952 when students at Luther Seminary, St. Paul, Minn.—including Ham Muus—decided the church wasn’t doing all it could to assist inner-city youth. Soon Muus and colleagues began taking their ministry to the streets of Minneapolis, working with young people.

From those meager beginnings, the Plymouth Christian Youth Center was founded. The center is thriving more than 50 years later, as is the Wilderness Canoe Base Program, which takes city youth on camping trips. Muus served as the center’s director until 1965. The excursions teach young people practical survival skills, as well as giving them an experience with nature away from the bustling city.


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