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Our Mission

Providing profound experiences in God's creation.

Mt. Cross Ministries is a lutheran summer camp and retreat facility. Established in 1948, Mt. Cross is the only Lutheran Outdoor Ministry in Northern California and Northern Nevada and is affiliated with the Sierra Pacific Synod of the ELCA and the California-Nevada-Hawaii District of the LCMS. It is a member of Lutheran Outdoor Ministries, an association of ELCA camps across the country. Mt. Cross Ministries operates consistent with the theology and culture of the ELCA.


Our History

Mt. Cross Ministries has been serving children, youth, and families at camp for over 75 years! The camp is located in the Santa Cruz Mountains town Ben Lomond, and is situated near many family attractions, parks, and beaches. The name of the camp was chosen from a list of suggested names solicited from Lutherans in Northern California. “Mt. Cross” was the suggestion of Rev. Ylvisaker, who at that time was the pastor of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, in Lafayette, California. He explained that “Mt” was for the terrain of the property and the “Cross” was derived from “Santa Cruz” meaning Holy Cross. 

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Our Vision

Rooted in Faith. Welcoming to ALL.

Mt. Cross Ministries welcomes all campers no matter their race, culture, ethnicity, age, gender expression or identity, sexual orientation, physical and mental abilities, socioeconomic position, family status, background, or where they are in their faith journey.

 We are called by Jesus to love God and one another, to practice radical hospitality, and to serve all without stipulations. We welcome you to join us at camp. You are a unique and beloved child of God. You are accepted and affirmed just as you are - with all your differences and all your gifts. We commit ourselves to embracing the work of anti-racism, social and economic justice, and environmental care. We invite you to join with us, as through Christ, we joyfully and inclusively love and serve our community. 

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