It’s time again for one of my absolute favorite weekends - the Spring Youth Retreat at La Foret.
This time, our theme is “We Built This City,” inspired by the Starship song and the idea of building beloved community. Logan Bennett, the Director of Transformational Programs, often tells the students that their time at La Foret is their chance to imaginatively create a space that reflects the world they want to see. Our hope is that this weekend, we will lean in to this kind of dreaming with special intention.
Of course, we will spend the weekend doing the typical camp activities - scavenger hunts, crafts, games, hiking, Frisbee golf, and my personal favorite, chill time. But we also have some really strong theme-related activities planned for the weekend.
First, we will give the students space for collaboration and imagination as they craft a city together. Then, we will spend time thinking about the ways we as individuals are gifted and important for contributing to our beloved communities. I rewrote a spiritual gifts workshop specifically for this weekend. Finally, students will be challenged to encourage each other by naming the ways they see each other’s gifts. In other words, they will be filling each other’s cups in beloved community so they can be sent out into being agents of wholeness in their contexts.
I want the students to feel valued and inspired. We have such a unique opportunity to empower a generation of brilliant, empathetic dreamers and doers. I hope their home churches will continue partnering in this work after the weekend is over. This will be my third youth retreat with our UCC Rocky Mountain Conference camp, and we’re bringing the largest bunch of students so far!
We’ll be driving down Friday afternoon and back up Sunday midday, so please pray for our travels, our health, and for our time together.
We’re so excited!