What a time it was!
A time for renewal, a time for reflection, and a time to meditate on God.
Words cannot capture the spirit and community felt by those there.
The video below tries to capture some of that essence. Please enjoy!
Scroll down for a more complete post, with more video clips, photos and audio recordings!
Thank you to Rev. Kim for his insightful messages. You can listen to his two lectures on this website: Happiness Seminar. (or scroll down below)
Thank you to the leaders and volunteers who made this happen, and thank YOU for being a part of this community!
Mostly, we thank our God for loving us, blessing us and showing us what authentic community is about. May we be a community that serves His will.
Step-By-Step Recap of the Retreat
Below is a step-by-step recap of the retreat. Please consume the content below continuously to get a fuller sense of what we experienced at the retreat!
Retreats are a special time.
It’s a time to get away from everything.
It’s a time to reflect spiritually on one’s journey.
It’s a time to connect with others in the community.
In a way, retreats are getting back to the essence of what’s important in life: reflecting on one’s deeper inner journey, and sharing the struggles and joys of life with others in community.
While nothing compares with being there in person and going through it yourself, I hope to capture the spirit of what is happening at the retreat!
Arrival and Anticipation
It was a long drive up to Muskoka Bible Centre from Toronto!
But surprisingly, almost everyone arrived by the scheduled 8pm start time.
The beginnings are always exciting. There’s much anticipation in the air!
Opening and Orientation
The retreat began with a rousing introduction by Rev. Chung to the theme of the retreat: “Journey to Fullness”.
There was an introductory exercise led by Rev. Son. We wrote down our prayer topics and nailed them to the cross.
A great time of praise ensued.
Group Discussion and Fellowship
People were placed in groups. People discussed what a journey means to them, and what they were looking forward to at the retreat.
It’s fair to say that the first group discussions went well! So well, in fact, that people were very hungry for cup ramen! A great time of fellowship at the Hub ensued.
As you can see from the video above, people had a great time feasting on cup ramen and other snacks.
A great way to cap the first night of the retreat!
The morning started with morning devotions led by Rev. Son.
People went into smaller groups to reflect on the Scripture passage.
The first meal at the retreat was full of anticipation.
However, there was some confusion, as we had scheduled breakfast earlier than the retreat centre had!
So we instead hung out outside the cafeteria. We eventually got in, and breakfast was a hit!
We hear from various people their thoughts on breakfast:
Journey to Fullness: Lecture 1
Rev. Kim led the first session. He spoke about the outer person and the inner person, and how we focus on the outer person to the detriment of the inner.
Listen to the first lecture here:
(please excuse the static for the first 2 minutes, it gets better after that!)
After the lecture, we had very meaningful group discussions.
Afternoon Free Time and Group Activities
The afternoon was free for people to enjoy as they wished.
People played volleyball, went canoeing, slept or just hung out.
Group activities ensued led by Nathan and Remo. They were quite entertaining to say the least!
After that, there was an organized soccer match between the adults and kids. The adults are having a harder time of beating the kids each year! They certainly gave the adults a run for their money.
Dinner and Evening Lecture
A wonderful dinner was followed by the evening session.
But just before the evening session, we had our annual tradition of taking a large group photo.
Listen to the evening lecture here:
Small groups really bonded over the discussions and was a highlight of the retreat for sure.
Once the evening session completed, people got ready for the campfire!
A little bit of rain didn’t deter us from forging on:
The last day is always kind of sad, as it marks an end. But the retreat was by no means done.
A great morning breakfast preceded breakfast.
After that, we had our Sunday worship. A small group from a Chinese church in Richmond Hill joined us for worship.
You can listen to the sermon here:
The service was followed by a time of community sharing. Elder James Choe shared his very personal testimony about what he has been going through. This sort of authentic, vulnerable openness is what strengthens a community. There were tears, moved hearts and a spirit of generosity as we embraced one another and affirmed each person’s worth to the community.
Lunch was our final meal as we prepared to depart.
A few people shared what they had learned from the retreat:
We were enormously blessed at this retreat. For those of you who missed out, we missed you dearly and hope that you join us next year!