Posted: June 5th, 2021
“Jesus Camp” A growing number of Evangelical Christians believe there is a revival underway in America that requires Christian youth to assume leadership roles in advocating the causes of their religious movement. “Jesus Camp” follows three home-schooled Missouri kids—12-year-old mullet-haired Levi, who was saved at 5; 10-year-old soldier’s daughter Tory, who loves dancing to Christian heavy metal; and 9-year-old Rachael, who breathlessly approaches strangers to talk about Christ—to Pastor Becky Fischer’s “Kids on Fire” summer camp in Devil’s Lake, North Dakota.
At this camp, kids as young as six years old are taught to become dedicated Christian soldiers in “God’s army. ” The film follows these children at camp as they hone their “prophetic gifts” and are taught how to “take back America for Christ. ” Wielding everything from PowerPoint to plush toys to illustrate the wages of sin, the impassioned Fischer has a clear-eyed view of children as malleable material, ripe for the inculcating. When they are not speaking in tongues, pledging allegiance to the Christian flag, or blessing a cardboard cutout of George W.
Bush, the kids rally round to hear Fischer and others entreat them to “join the war,” “fix the sick world,” and fight abortion. The film looks into an intense training ground that recruits born-again Christian children to become an active part of America’s political future. The fundamentalist revival is a concept that can be associated with “Jesus Camp. ” While many of the large, mainline churches have lost members, other churches (such as the Evangelical Christian churches) have gained members.
Contrary to mainline Protestants, Evangelical Christians emphasize a literal interpretation of the Bible. They also stress emotional demonstrativeness rather than quiet, inward devotion at church services (Thio, 2007, pp. 354). For instance, the kids who attended “Kids on Fire” summer camp spoke in tongues, pledged allegiance to the Christian flag, and blessed a cardboard cutout of George W. Bush instead of quietly praying during church services. Bibliography Thio, Alex. 2007. Society Myths and Realities; An Introduction to Sociology. Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon.
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