The Lord directed Mike into Christian Camping as a result of a work related injury in 1986. God brought him to a place where he was able to use all his previous work experiences in service to Him.
In 1987, Mike joined the staff at Fort Wilderness as Head Wrangler in their horsemanship program. Over eight years, his responsibilities broadened to include leading worship and planning programs. The Lord also gave him a partner in ministry – he met and married his wife, Becky.
In 1995, the Lord led them to another ministry in central Wisconsin, Camp Forest Springs. Here his responsibilities expanded to include overseeing food service, stores, first aid, adventure ministries, and outdoor education. Over time, he also became responsible for overseeing the summer counselors and hiring seasonal staff.
The vision for Harvest Home Farm was developed out of these years of ministry experience and a desire to serve and encourage families through a farm environment with the ministry of the Gospel.
Mike and Becky have been married for 21 years and have four children.
Dr. Larry Guthrie officially transitioned to full time staff at Harvest Home Farm on July 2007, from the Director of Educational Ministries at Camp Forest Springs in Westboro, Wisconsin. His primary responsibility there was the Leadership Training and Development Program. He was also involved in developing curriculum for family camps, youth camps, and follow-up ministries.
At Harvest Home Farm, Larry is responsible for teaching and developing curriculum for the Farm School.
Larry is a former research assistant and writer for the Institute in Basic Life Principles. He has worked on such publications as “Character Sketches” volumes III and IV and the “Eagle Story.” He also wrote science and medical curriculum materials for the Institute’s home education program, The Advanced Training Institute of America. Dr. Guthrie is the former director of the Children’s Institute which offers character training and instruction in basic Biblical principles to children ages 6-12. Over the past 10 years, these week-long children’s seminars have enrolled over 175,000 children in 50 cities and 8 foreign countries. Dr. Guthrie also served as Director of Curriculum Development for Character First! Ed. a national non-profit character training program for public schools with headquarters in Oklahoma City.
Dr. Larry Guthrie is a graduate of the University of Illinois and taught seven years as a public school science teacher before becoming a Professor of Education at Indiana University Northwest.
Larry and his wife Lois have been married for over 40 years and have two married children and seven grandchildren.
In His perfect timing, God has answered our prayer for help! Josh and Kerra Abeln joined staff in the fall of 2013 as the Farm Manager and Guest Services Coordinator. Josh and Kerra have a long list of interests, gifts and experiences that will bless the ministry but their sincere faith, love for Jesus and hearts for people shine the brightest in their lives. Here are a few words of introduction and testimony from them…
About Josh: I grew up in a Christian home in St. Louis, Missouri. After high school, I worked in construction for 2 years. The Lord used a car accident, to make His direction for my life clear. In obedience to Him, I surrendered and was lead to Nicaragua to work with a missionary. It was during these years that I knew I was to spend the rest of my life in ministry. I did an internship in Christian camping at Camp Forest Springs, where I met Kerra. We were married in 2011. I spent six months at a Camp in Mexico then returned to CFS, helping with construction. During my internship, I was introduced to the ministry of Harvest Home Farm. Its uniqueness always fascinated me. It wasn’t until later that the Lord reminded my wife and me of Harvest Home Farm and began to lead us to pursue ministry there.
About Kerra: I grew up at Camp Forest Springs in Wisconsin. After graduating with a two-year degree in Bible, I went with my family to Spanish language school to prepare to serve at a Camp in Mexico. Knowing that I wanted to use the skills God had given me in service to Him, I spent one year helping develop the Camp in Mexico. Josh and I then returned to Wisconsin to serve together. I have known the Poulos family since my growing up years. I’d always admired Harvest Home Farm, but it wasn’t until more recently that we felt the Lord touching our hearts toward this ministry in terms of joining staff.
We can clearly see that the Lord is working in our lives. As a couple, we are thrilled to grow together on this path of ministry.