Ready Retreat Parents and Leaders,
Ready Retreat 2017 is almost here! This year’s retreat will look different than any year before. We’ll be serving the homeless and near homeless in New Orleans as well as visiting Bogalusa one day, the town where we’ll be serving on High School Mission. Like previous years, our time together will be used to help train our students to be disciple makers and will include various team challenges, worshipping together, and times of learning. This year we have the added element of serving and sharing our stories of God with those in need. One of the challenges each team receives will require preparation and work after the Ready Retreat. It is expected that each student on Ready Retreat contributes to complete this challenge after Spring Break. Sarah Morris and I will be the staff members going on Ready Retreat.
Click here for the packing list.
Students are allowed to have cell phones on this trip. It is expected that they do not become a distraction and that they do not use them when we are serving. If they do become a distraction, we will take it away.
We will be sleeping at the St. Mark’s UMC, also known as the North Rampart Community Center, in New Orleans. We will be sleeping in bunk beds or on cots. Bring twin sized bedding or a sleeping bag.
This retreat will stretch us a bit outside of our comfort zones. We will be serving with people who are different and have different life experiences than us. Saturday night we will be joining Mission New Orleans in their weekly outreach by going out with them and ministering to the homeless. We will have opportunities to listen to and talk with homeless people, including times for us to tell them how God has worked in our lives. We will be out very late doing this, and then have to get up early on Sunday to go prepare and serve breakfast to the homeless at St. George Episcopal Church. This will be tiring, but we will have time to rest Sunday afternoon. Monday we will serve with Mission New Orleans in Lacombe and Tuesday we will go to Bogalusa. There will be time Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday afternoons to explore New Orleans a bit and go to Café Du Monde.
All students and leaders on the Ready Retreat must arrive at Solid Rock Café at the church at 7:30am on Saturday March 11th. We will be driving in vans to New Orleans and will arrive about 5pm. On Wednesday, March 15 we will rise about 7am to drive home, and will arrive back at the church about 5:00pm. It is on the packing list, but please be aware that students need to bring a sack lunch for the road on Saturday, March 11. Any other snacks outside of the ones we provide or souvenirs they wish to purchase will be their financial responsibility. We will visit Café Du Monde for coffee/hot chocolate and beignets - paying for this is an individual responsibility.
We already have everyone’s medical information form. If your student takes prescription medication, please fill out this form and bring the medications to the student ministry office sometime between Sunday, March 5 and Thursday, March 9 in the original labeled bottle from the pharmacy (your pharmacist can give you an extra bottle). Please bring only the amount needed for the days we will be gone. Please do not pack over the counter meds, as we will have those.
Lastly, please be in prayer for our retreat beginning now. Pray for God to reveal Himself to us. Pray for God to use us as a witness to those we encounter. Pray that God gives us confidence in our efforts and helps us realize our capabilities in growing His Kingdom. Lastly, pray for safety and good health for all of us going.