Laity Retreats to offer leaders spiritual renewal

Come and bathe yourself in worship with other United Methodists on our district, drink in God’s word, learn from one another, and refresh yourself to continue in the ministry to which God has called you.”

That enticing invitation is how one EPA district aptly described its upcoming Laity Retreat on Saturday, March 1, when laity will gather in retreat at three locations.

“Living Water for Thirsty Leaders” is the unifying theme for this fourth annual, multi-site Laity Retreat, recalling Jesus’ promise of spiritual refreshment to the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4:7-15. Districts plan to experience the significance of that promise through worship, fellowship, preaching, prayer, Holy Communion, lunch and ceremonial washing of participants’ feet or hands.

Update: The Southwest and Northeast districts have cancelled their retreats. Interested persons may attend one of the other retreats described below.

EPA Conference Lay Leader Dr. Mary White and Christ Servant Minister Dave Crowl will speak at the Northwest District Laity Retreat (Cost: $10), which will gather from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Ash Grove UMC in Paximos, Pa.

The Southeast District Laity Retreat (Cost: $10), will be from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Lima UMC in Media, Pa. Featured speakers include the Rev. Mercedes Case, the Rev. Susan Worrell and Jennifer Lafferty, a Certified Lay Minister.

And laity in the East and Central districts will come together for a unified retreat (Cost: $20), from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., at The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia. The Rev. Dr. Gary George and Victor Gimenez will address the combined body.

The various retreats promise a day of spiritual renewal and relationship-nurturing, enhanced by the hospitality of their host sites and the coordinating efforts of district lay leaders and their supporters.

–John Coleman

Note: Time to Nominate Conference Lay Leader for 2014-2018 The EPA Annual Conference will elect a lay leader for 2014-2018 during its Laity Session May 15. While current, two-term Lay Leader Dr. Mary White plans to seek the office again, members may nominate other candidates as well. The announcement and nomination form are available in the Lay Ministry section of on the conference Web site. Forms must be mailed or postmarked by April 12.