'Jesus Camp' Depicts Young Soldiers of God

ByABC News via logo
September 27, 2006, 7:05 AM

Sept. 27, 2006 — -- The documentary "Jesus Camp" is sparking debate with its portrayal of evangelical Christians and an extreme Bible camp.

Kids on Fire, a summer getaway for evangelical Christians, is a Bible camp nestled in Devil's Lake, N.D.

At Kids on Fire, children learn how to be true Christian soldiers.

Instead of telling ghost stories around the campfire, children speak in tongues and bless a cutout of President Bush.

Pastor Becky Fischer, the camp's leader, says the point of the camp is to encourage attendees to "take back America for Christ."

"I want to see young people who are as committed to the cause of Jesus Christ as the young people are to the cause of Islam," she said.

At Kids on Fire, it's all Christian values, all the time.

Even Harry Potter doesn't make the cut.

One little boy said he didn't read the books because they were Satanic and didn't bring him closer to God.

While Potter is not OK, politics are -- conservative and Christian.

Issues like abortion are discussed, and political protests become field trips for the campers.

"I feel like we're kind of being trained to be warriors, only in a much funner way," one camper said.

Some less-extreme Christians, including radio talk-show host Mike Papantonio, fear the children at Kids on Fire are being used as political pawns by adults with an agenda.

"There is a religious, political army of foot soldiers out there that are being directed by a political right," Papantonio said.

Camp founders insist they are doing God's will: to save lives and souls.

"Jesus Camp" opened in limited release on Sept. 20.

Some Christian conservatives hope their message will get out with the gradual nationwide release of the documentary, one movie theater at a time.