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Church in the wild: student-led ministry brings gospel to national parks

A Christian Ministry in the National Parks (ACMNP), a grassroots and student-led ministry, is making a significant impact in spreading the gospel across America’s national parks. Founded by Warren Ost in 1951, ACMNP was born out of a desire to connect the beauty of nature with the message of faith. ACMNP sends teams of dedicated individuals to these national parks, where they engage with park guests through Bible studies, worship services, and conversations centered around faith and hope. The ministry’s origins date back to a Bible study held in the bar of the Old Faithful Inn, demonstrating its commitment to meeting people where they are and sharing the message of Christianity in unconventional settings.

CBN News reports:

God is changing lives in the wilderness, from Alaska to the Virgin Islands, through a 70-year-old ministry dedicated to spreading the gospel in America’s national parks.

In some of Earth’s last remaining wild spaces, park visitors can experience nature in its raw form. Many of the country’s more than 420 designated public lands contain remote and rugged terrain. These are the places where ACMNP, or A Christian Ministry in the National Parks, sends team members.

Amy Kennedy serves as ACMNP’s Co-Executive Director, telling CBN News that while many come in search of healing, restoration, or peace – working in these spaces is not always just ‘a walk in the park’.

“There’s a lot of really hard things that happen in the parks every year,” Kennedy said. “We hear of things like drug abuse, alcohol abuse, suicide. And so, our team members – more than just offering a place to have a local church – they’re really trying to befriend and care for the community and provide them an opportunity to maybe disrupt that pathway.”

ACMNP is grassroots, student led-effort, founded by Warren Ost in 1951 when he saw no connection between Yellowstone and the local church. It began with a Bible study in the bar of the Old Faithful Inn, sharing faith and hope with park guests. Today, the organization serves 45 parks.

Read the full article here.

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