The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Kids and families, head outside!

'Nature provokes us to be awestruck by God's creation'

Kids who hole up in the house or hang out at the mall might be missing out on more than fresh air and sunshine this summer. Too much time indoors shuts them out from a season that’s alive with opportunities for experiencing God’s presence through nature. Soaking up the goodness of creation is as vital for children’s growing faith lives as it is for the health of their growing bodies, experts say.

dad and children on a walk“When we get away from our distractions and go outdoors, we’re more likely to encounter the majesty and wonder of God,” said Nancy A. Hess, executive director of Calumet Lutheran Ministries, an ELCA
retreat center in West Ossipee, N.H., that serves more than 2,000 children each year through its summer camps.

Research shows that children today spend less time outdoors than in generations past — a situation that Hess and others believe has stunted their hardwired spirituality.

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February issue


Embracing diversity