Friday, August 3, 2012

Pastoral Retreat in Mexico

Last week, Professor Natán and I joined our Mexican brothers and sisters in faith for a "retiro pastoral" - pastoral retreat. Our group of 43 included 10 Mexican pastors and their families, 2 seminary students, 2 LATTE professors and their wives, and a Mexican missionary and his family.

The mornings began with a group breakfast at the missionary's cabin. The ladies divided into teams to prepare and serve the meals throughout the retreat. I came home with some great new recipes!

After breakfast, all of us headed to a conference room for a devotion. Then the women returned to the cabin for a Bible Study focused on how living in a glass house can be a positive thing. The youth led the children to the cabin next-door to teach them Bible stories and crafts. The men remained in the conference room for two in-depth Bible studies and a workshop to compose a new hymnal.

After the Bible study, the ladies did last-minute grocery shopping and began lunch preparations. Then the entire group met for lunch at the cabin. The afternoon was full of free time to play soccer, swim, hike, nap, and spend time together as a family.

I really enjoyed this time getting to know my sisters in Christ more deeply. To share the joys and challenges of life in Mexico along with being the wife of a pastor. I am extremely thankful for the endless bits of advice that they gave me about basic aspects of daily living, new vocabulary, at home remedies, and living your life as a witness for Christ.

In the early evening, we came together again at the cabin for a devotion followed by a light supper. The day concluded with fellowship and a few guitarists for entertainment. We repeated this schedule for three days in a row.

Created with flickr slideshow.

Everyone cherished these special moments together as many of them live far distances apart, and some of the pastor's wives met one another for the first time. The previous pastoral retreat was 9 years ago, so the group has grown quite a bit from that time. We hope to gather again for the next Mexican pastoral retreat in 2014.

One of the highlights for Natán and me, was to share a video of greetings to our Christian brothers and sisters in Latin America with the group. While we were in the USA on furlough, we interviewed several students, members, and pastors from the Phoenix area in Arizona, the Apache mission in Arizona, attendees at the LWMS Convention in North Carolina who are members of Sure Foundation in New York, New York and are originally from Latin America. We also included greetings from one of the pastors from our sister synod in Brazil. The Mexican pastors and their wives appreciated the greetings so much that they've requested copies to share with their congregations.

The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body—whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free —and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 1 Corinthians 12:12-13

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