RAINBOW TRAIL LUTHERAN CAMP
Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp creates holy spaces that embody God's radical grace to affirm, empower, and transform all people to be Christ's light in the world.
Our Missional Motivators are:
We value and are intentional about:
• Holy spaces where God is at work
• Genuinely living God's profound grace and love
• Actively engaging in the living Word of God
• Authentic, safe, and quality relationships and experiences
• Radical and abundant hospitality
• All people being empowered to claim and live out their unique gifts.
The ministries of Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp started in 1957 serving the youth of the Rocky Mountain Synod of the Lutheran Church on this special site. The camp is located in the San Isabel Forest of the Sangre de Cristo mountains. In the early years, Rainbow Trail offered a few youth weeks of camp as well as several family work camps to build the camp facilities. During the 1960's, Rainbow Trail used volunteer staff to serve the growing camper population. In the 1970's, Rainbow Trail hired its first full-time director and began having paid college-aged staff to serve their campers. In the 1980's, the backpack program was added to its ministry. In the 1990's, Day Camp ministry as well as Bridging Borders service based ministry were added to Rainbow Trail's program offerings. Currently, Rainbow Trail's ministry has expanded to serve not only ten weeks of resident style camp in the summer but also 35 day camps, hundreds of campers through our Compass Points high adventure program, over 100 Senior High youth through its Bridging Borders service programs, and also full gamut of retreat ministries throughout the rest of the year. The future holds great possibilities for this ministry with expansion of on-site ministries as well as new and innovative off-site programs.
"I have to share our deep and sincere gratitude for the most precious gift- the past week at Rainbow Trail- for our son Jack. The peace he felt the minute he stepped into the camp was long lasting. This was his first time away to sleep-away camp and did not know a single person.
WOW!! In every aspect! He loved each moment, experience, lesson, meal,
adventure, friendship, tear, and giggle. What a sacred place, what a gift for an almost 8th grade boy. His counselor was Dean- and Dean made an huge imprint in the life of a teenage boy- the match up could not have been more perfect! Dean is an extraordinary young man!
Thank you for your ministry - thank you for the amazing staff you found to enrich these kids forever! Their greatness will spread!
The peace we as parents felt at camp was profound too- we had to wipe away tears of happiness several times in final worship and saying goodbye! We feel forever blessed to have had Jack attend Rainbow Trail! He already says he's back next year and wants his sister to come too!
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts. God is at work at RTLC!!
See you next year!"
Darcy and Bill
Thank you so much for the scholarship you gave to Roy Nelson this summer. I want you to know that not only did he have a fantastic time, but his experience is effecting change in his entire family. He is speaking more openly with his guardian family, even to the point of telling them for the first time about things that happened to him while living with his previous guardian family. He is expressing his love and appreciation to his present family for rescuing him which he never did before. They have prayed together each day since his return, also including his birth mother in the prayers because they pray while on the phone with her. (His birth mother is one of my parishioners.)
I can't find the words to tell you how many people Rainbow Trail touched by inviting this one young man to spend a week. On behalf of all the mothers at New Beginnings who ache for their children, and all the families caring for those children, as well as me, please accept our thanks.
I'd also like to invite you and any staff from Rainbow Trail to come to our annual benefit dinner on October 7th. It is held at Augustana Lutheran Church, and Roy's guardian mother will be the speaker. Roy will be there. Roy's experience at Rainbow Trail will be lifted up as an example of how we can change people's lives.
You can find information on our website: newbeginningswc.org. I'll also send you an invitation.
Peace and grace,
"I got Ainsley home yesterday from camp and wanted to say thanks to you and your wonderful crew for the great week she had. She is on a high and not coming down anytime soon.
She's a camp nut and has been going since 1st grade so it's not surprising that she had a good week, but this one was really special. Ranja and Isaiah were her village counselors and she speaks so highly of them and how they shared themselves with the campers. Ainsley says that Ranja was a "servant leader" taking extra care of the girls in their cabin (bringing them hot chocolate one morning and loving them for their individual gifts) and Isaiah was a great Bible study leader and really was able to go deep with the kids.
Thank you for the AMAZING ministry you lead. YOU and your crew are making a wonderful difference for so many high school kiddos, including mine!"
"My wife, Kathy, and I have been long time supporters of Rainbow Trail and Sky Ranch Camps! We are members of Atonement Lutheran Church in Boulder. We sent our children (Kris & Dave) to Sky Ranch several times about 25 years ago and they had great experiences. This past year we sent our Granddaughter Kaitlin (turned 9 on June 13) to Rainbow Trail Jr Camp #2 from July 26 - August 1. Mike and Kris, Kaitlin's parents, are members of Christ the Servant Lutheran Church in Louisville. Kaitlin's Counselor was Addison Choi.
Speaking of "Taking it down the mountain"; First of all she absolutely loved camp. She can not wait to return next year and have her brother, Nicholas, experience camp (he is 7 years old). This was Kaitlin's first experience away from home on an extended basis! She felt that everyone was so nice and kind to each other, initiated by the Rainbow Trail staff and followed through by her fellow campers! She really enjoyed getting to know her fellow campers and to have Addy as her Counselor! Immediately upon her return from camp, Kaitlin initiated nightly Bible reading, discussion of the Bible verses read and prayer with her family!
You may not get a lot of feedback, so we wanted to let you know that what you are doing positively affects the lives of campers and strengthens their Christian faith as they "take it down the mountain". I know that Mike and Kris also echo our comments about Kaitlin's very positive experience at Rainbow Trail!
John & Kathy Erickson"
"You tell about the ship poster that once graced your office door which said "Ships are safe in the harbor but that's not what ships are built for." Yes. So true. And so apropos when thinking of our calling as Christ's disciples. Many New Testament images of boats and waves and frightened disciples fill me as I think of this analogy to my everyday activity. Indeed, it reminds me that my calling is not easy and Jesus never promised it would be. He simply promised to be with me as I stepped from the boat onto the turbulent waves and walked to those who were crying out for His compassion, His love, and His grace.
But having spent a week with you and your Rainbow Trail staff, I've been thinking about harbors. Ship harbors, human harbors, Christ's harbors. This is the third year my family has been blessed to be part of family camp and I want to say Thank you for such a miraculous harbor. Those two words seem terribly inadequate but at some point - either during or after delivery - I have to believe the Holy Spirit will infuse them with our heart's full intent.
When I proposed to Brent the possibility of sending the first of our four sons to Rainbow Trail, little did I know what a watershed of blessings it would become for our entire family. Brent was not comfortable sending our offspring to a place he wasn't familiar with so he got busy investigating where Rainbow Trail was and exactly what it meant. When he discovered you offered family camp, he then had the job of talking me into spending one of our precious weeks of vacation in this manner but, lo and behold, if there is one thing he excels at, it's persistence!
Since then, our return visits speak for your program and staff. You have created a harbor for families to laugh, play, love, and, most importantly, remember their covenants with each other and God. You have created a harbor we can periodically pull into and fill up our cargo space with spiritual, emotional, and physical goodies so we're able to sail once more into the world's turbulent sea. I've thought of that often this past week as I came home from Rainbow Trail and returned to sadness and grief. A friend's 29-year-old pregnant wife was found dead of an unknown medical condition, another friend's mother had a stroke, a third was reeling from his wife's affair. With the memories of Rainbow Trail, I felt capable of reaching out to these hurting people and write sympathy cards, reach over with a hug, cry with them, and use my hands, my feet, my heart, my voice to do what's necessary in serving God's people well.
When society at large talks about family values, I don't see much action in support of them. Sadly, I sometimes see the same in our churches. It is extremely gratifying to know we're associated with a church that not only says they want to support families and their growth, they also put this sentiment into action. Please thank your counseling staff, the Rainbow Trail board, your support staff, and your entire family for allowing us to spend a week in the harbor remembering who we are and who we are called to be. Sailing into Rainbow Trail has to be the same euphoria sailors must feel, and have always felt, after a long, arduous journey across the sea.
With a deep, sweeping bow and a foot-stompin' cheer,