The 2017 St. Lawrence & Atlantic Women’s Presbyterial Retreat is a mouthful, for sure! But this annual two-day conference provides rich spiritual sustenance to each person present. This year, we met April 28-29th at Messiah’s Church (Clay, NY) where speaker Joel Wood (Burtonsville, MD) preached a wonderfully vibrant series on “A Suffering Servant, Resurrected, Restored: The Gospel According to Job”. God used his messages mightily to encourage us in our daily struggles with sin, sorrow, & suffering, while reminding us to rest in God’s completed redemption through Christ.
Julie Ward (Ottawa, ON) shared honestly of her struggles during her time in South Sudan, moving the entire gathering to tears as she related how God worked in her heart and in the hearts of Sudanese believers whose lives were full of painful events. We also heard an update on White Lake Family Camp and a “Culture Report” which presented items of national concern for prayer (abortion, euthanasia, missions, freedom of speech, key court cases, etc). Hearing 70+ women sing psalms together was just heavenly!
Members of Messiah’s Church who run a catering business provided delicious meals & snacks, which gave extra opportunity for joyful fellowship. The weather was crystal clear, allowing afternoon times of fellowship such as bocce games, the use of massage tools for relaxation, and excursions to nearby Onandaga Lake, while conversation continued late into the night at the hotel as old friends caught up with each other and new friends forged connections.
Next year the St. Lawrence & Atlantic Women’s Presbyterial Retreat is planned for April 21-22 in Rochester, NY. More details to come!
Mrs Laura Rizzo