Our Winter Youth Retreats were a hit this past January, with over 200 youth and sponsors. Our Senior High retreat was as large as it has been in recent years, and our two Junior High retreats were popular as well. Despite the mild weather and lack of snow for our tube run, we managed to keep busy, stay warm and learn about God and Creation.
Throughout each weekend, we participated in lots of fun activities including (but not limited to) nature hikes, basketball, arts and crafts, board games, ping pong, and group discussions among our youth groups. One highlight for many youth was the “Winter Olympics,” an event that challenged the youth to work together as a team in several different events that each used a different skill set. I enjoyed watching the teams struggle to answer riddles, throw Frisbees and sing songs during this challenge!
Special thanks to our many volunteers who came out to give their time leading activities, preparing food, washing dishes and worshiping with the youth. And thank you to the Bluffton University and Goshen College students who came to lead music, as well as Jo-Ann Brant and Scott Litwiller who delivered thought-provoking and interesting meditations for our youth!
Winter Retreats would not be possible without the amazing sponsors and youth pastors who bring their youth each and every year. We had groups from all of the following churches over the course of the three winter retreats:
- Assembly MennoniteChurch
- Berkey Avenue Mennonite Church
- College Mennonite Church
- Eighth Street Mennonite Church
- First Mennonite Church of Bluffton
- Hively Mennonite Church
- Huntington Mennonite Church
- Kern Road Mennonite Church
- Maplewood Mennonite Church
- Milwaukee Mennonite Church
- North Danvers/Carlock, Ill. Churches
- North Goshen Mennonite Church
- Prairie Street Mennonite Church
- Salem Mennonite Church
- Silverwood Mennonite Church
- United Presbyterian Church of Cassopolis
- Walnut Hill Mennonite Church