Jesus Camp

4083Jesus Camp is a documentary that I saw at the Tribeca Film Festival this week.  The film is a portrait of kids who attend a camp in North Dakota that is run by an evangelical woman preacher.  Most of these kids have been born again from a very young age.  The film is frightening and interesting at the same time. 

The filmmakers zero in on 2 kids, Levi and Rachael.  Levi declared to be born again at age 5. He thinks of himself as a preacher.  He is home schooled.  The statistical information that is given during the film was pretty interesting.  1.8 million kids are home school and 75% of them are evangelical.  Wow.  Also, 49% of born agains are born again before age 14.  Interesting.  Brainwashing perhaps?  Levi is taught by his mother that science is bad, global warming is irrelevant and George Bush is our hero.  He is doing the work of the Lord. 

Rachael, speaks like she is 30 years old.  She attempts to convert random people on the street because god told her to do so.  These kids are also hauled off to protest at abortion clinics with red tape sealing their mouth with the word LIFE written over it.  At one point at the camp they are shown small babies at different weeks old to show abortion being bad.  Meanwhile these tiny babies are fully formed at 3 weeks. 

The preacher, Becky Fisher, preaches to these kids the evils of sin.  The week long camp with kids and parents in tow was like watching people go through a brain washing exercise.  Seeing a 7 year old girl sob and throw her arms up in the air for Jesus because she hasn’t always been a believer in school makes your jaw drop.

The film makers, Heidi Ewing and Rachael Grady spoke to us after the movie.  They had a tremendous amount of energy.  They started out making a movie about children preachers and ended up following another path.  The documentary makes you ask bigger questions.  What is the role of religion in politics? 

One of the preachers they film from Colorado Springs who has one of the biggest followings in the country actually speaks with George Bush for a conference call every Monday.  This preacher gave me the impression of someone that makes you check your wallet when he leaves the room. 

Other questions come to mind to.  Children learn from their parents.  Are liberal parents allowing kids to look at the big picture and make their own decisions or are they brain washing them too?  Liberals aren’t taking their kids to camps to be preached at over and over again 24 hours a day.

The film will be showed on A & E over the next couple of months.  I highly recommend watching it.  It scared the hell out of me.  What I saw was mental child abuse.  These people truly believe that the lord is their savoir.  Why worry about global warming when Jesus is coming to save you tomorrow?  If these people are making an impact on our politicos, wow.  Very scary.