About Bear Creek Camp


Bear Creek Camp’s mission is to invite all people to explore, celebrate, and grow in relationship with God, nature, and community.

OUR Vision

To have all people feel accepted and loved in this community so they can reflect their experiences to make a positive difference in the world.

OUR Core Values

We value building inclusive community, caring for creation, promoting adventure and fun, sharing grace-filled faith, cultivating empathy, and developing leaders.

Bear Creek Camp is a ministry of the Southeastern and Northeastern Pennsylvania Synods of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).

Located on nearly 3,000 acres in the beauty of the Pocono Mountains, Bear Creek Camp offers year-round opportunities, including summer residential youth camp, nature day camp, environmental education programs, weekend camp retreats and group rentals.

We believe in the power of the global network of Lutheran Camps and are sustaining members of Lutheran Outdoor Ministries.

We are proud to be an accredited member of the American Camp Association. As an ACA Accredited camp we follow a rigorous set of industry standards for safety and best practices.


A beginning on the Delaware River...

Bear Creek Camp has been in operation at our present site since 1974. Lutheran outdoor ministries in Eastern Pennsylvania stretch back almost another 50 years at our predecessor camps. These camps – Miller, Hagan and Ministerium – were located along the Delaware River and run by the synods beginning in 1927.

In the 1960s, the U.S. government began planning to take over the area on the Delaware River (near Shawnee on Delaware) where Bear Creek’s “legacy” camps were located, with plans to build a dam and reservoir upstream.

... to a home in the Poconos

Facing potential eminent domain actions, the camps embarked on a search for a new property. In the early 1970s, what was then the Eastern Pennsylvania Synod of the Lutheran Church in America acquired the land near Bear Creek Village.

Bear Creek Camp has been in operation since 1974, and has hosted residential summer programs for youth as well as family camping weekends, special events and programs, and facility rentals to private groups ever since.

OUR WElcome

Bear Creek Camp is committed to the care and well-being of all. We strive to cultivate an uplifting and loving environment where each person is wholly accepted and affirmed for who they are.

Our Lutheran foundation calls us to work toward justice and peace for all of God’s people. With intentional support of historically marginalized peoples, we commit to promoting racial equity and the affirmation of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions among our community. At Bear Creek Camp, we value thoughtful curiosity, open perspectives, and the celebration of difference among all who share this space. Having experienced this authentic welcome, all who travel our red dirt road will depart equipped to energize their communities with that same expansive spirit of inclusion.

Rooted in our long-held pursuit of intentional community, we seek to create holy ground at Bear Creek Camp that will help shape individuals and communities for generations to come.

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