Since its start, Seisen-Ryo has been acting as a retreat center and a nature experience center in the great nature for training young leaders, however, unfortunately, as the international situation became worse after the Pacific War in 1941 (Showa 16), all the camps were cancelled and Seisen -Ryo had to close.
In 1945 (Showa 20), right after the war ended, Dr. Paul Rusch returned to Japan as a GHQ officer.
Through his devoted efforts, war-devastated Seisen-Ryo was reconstructed, and it served as a base of the Kiyosato Community Center, welcoming many visitors. But in November 1955 (Showa 30), Seisen-Ryo burned to the ground in a fire together with the valuable documents and records.
In 1957 (Showa 32), Seisen-Ryo was rebuilt again. The opening ceremony was held inviting the Prince and the Princess of Takamatsu.
The rebuilt Seisen-Ryo is the present Main Lodge building. With its warmth of woods, the Main Lodge attracts many groups of schools and companies as a training center, as well as individual travelers.
Taking over the image of the Main Lodge with the long history, the Seisen-Ryo New Lodge was built in 2009 (Heisei 21) as a lodging for group training, welcoming many guests.
On the wall of the front entrance of the Seisen-Ryo Main Lodge, you may see the X shaped cross called the St. Andrew’s Cross, which is the symbol of the BSAJ that established the Seisen-Ryo.
The X shaped cross comes from the story of St. Andrews; It is believed that the apostle Andrew has told his executioners that he was not worthy to be crucified on the same cross style as Jesus, and persuaded them to alter the X shaped cross that should be used for criminals at that time, and was crucified on it.
Seisen-Ryo is located in the awesome view of Mt. Fuji. When Dr. Paul Rusch was searching for the place to build the camp for BSAJ, his priority was somewhere with great view of Japanese symbol, Mt. Fuji.
Introduced by Mr. Nakazawa of the owner of the “Danro-Kan” in Kofu, Dr. Paul Rusch visited Kiyosato and found out that it was the place of scenic beauty with the view of Mt. Fuji in the south, Chichibu mountain ranges in the east, South Alps in the west, and the Yatsugatake Mountains in the north.
He loved the place so much that he decided to build the camp in Kiyosato. Now, the statue of Dr. Paul Rusch in front of the Seisen-Ryo Main Lodge was built facing Mt. Fuji.
The camp was completed in 1938 (Showa 13), and there were many ideas for the name of the camp, such as naming after a phrase in the Bible, or the name of the surrounding mountains, etc.. Father Takamatsu, a father at St. Paul’s University in Tokyo at the time, was requested to find a good name for the camp, and he came up with the idea of taking one letter from the two villages where the camp was located, namely “Kiyosato” and “Oizumi”, and created a new name “Seisen-Ryo”.
Dr. Paul Rusch was not satisfied with the name being named simply by picking up the words from the name of the villages, however, he became to be hugely pleased with the name as he found out the translation of the new name “Seisen-Ryo” was “the camp with pure spring”.