Thursday, September 29, 2005

No Fees. No Agenda. No Schedule. Just Time with the Lord

The Pastors Retreat Network exists to enrich the lives and ministry of individuals and couples engaged in fulltime pastoral Christian ministry. We provide a retreat experience for Christian pastors, strengthening them through self-directed programs that focus on experiencing God and Jesus Christ through the Scriptures in settings that invite them into the presence of God.

No Fees, No Agenda, No Schedule, Just time with Him.

"I am the Good Shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me." John 10:17
Being a shepherd is a messy business. Sheep butt heads, smell bad, and make a lot of noise. They wander, get hurt, and venture into dangerous territory. Sheep need strong, healthy shepherds with courage, vision and a willingness to get dirty.

Where do you as a pastor get the courage and heart to shepherd your flock? What does it take to know and follow the Shepherd? Pastors Retreat Network offers a quiet place where you can hear the Shepherd's voice, gain strength, recover vision, and rest in His arms. Come and catch the beat of His heart.

Click here for more information: http://www.pastorsretreatnetwork.org

Program Descriptions:

Continuing Education for the Pastor's Heart
What is Continuing Education of the Heart?
Sabbath Rest
Bethany Retreat
Sinai Experience
Self-Directed Retreats

Continuing Education for the Pastor's Heart
From its inception, Pastors Retreat Network received recognition from the IRS as a continuing education program. That status makes it possible for our guests to attend retreats free of charge without tax penalty, if they are involved in program activities 4-6 hours daily.
The IRS approved programs contain the elements of prayer, Bible and other spiritual reading, fellowship (networking), and marriage building activities. They are available as five-day self-directed retreats in an environment that allows large blocks of unstructured time and freedom from daily responsibilities. There is time for rest, reflection, and recreation.

What is Continuing Education of the Heart?
For each pastor and ministry couple, the process is unique, but the outcome is consistent - the individual completes the retreat experience refreshed, renewed, and more deeply in love with the God they serve.

There are no classes, no schedules, and no agendas - God creates his own lesson plan in each heart. The foundational textbook is Scripture, the director of education is the Lord, and the subject is spiritual revival. Through the gentle leading of the Holy Spirit, head knowledge becomes heart experience. All guests are required to attend the community meal served each day, where our hosts create a safe community in which to share the individual's experience of ministry and the program.

Pastors Retreat Network makes available to each pastor or couple three distinct programs. Each guest room has its own library of books and materials that provide a basis for spiritual formation. Some focus on spiritual disciplines, others are devotional, some simply provide encouragement.

Lest one think that this is all serious work, we remember God's creativity and humor. Laughter abounds, and is often the release necessary for a deeper experience of God and each other.

All programs are available at each retreat center, and each represents a complete five-day experience. We invite you to choose the program that best fits your needs and pursue it wholeheartedly during your time with us.

Sabbath Rest
The Sabbath Rest program enables the pastor to incorporate resources from the room library with materials he or she may bring with them. There are limited program suggestions available, incorporating time alone with God, time with spouse, time in nature and time in fellowship with others. From these components, guests design their own experience. God may lead them into a prayer retreat, a time of marriage renewal, a time to integrate all they have been learning, or a time to catch a fresh vision for their personal ministry.

Bethany Retreat
The Bethany Retreat is a spiritual formation experience for couples. For those who desire a bit of guidance in getting started on the spiritual formation journey, there are suggested readings, prayers, and activities that enable partners to deepen the spiritual aspect of their marriage relationship. We strongly encourage a date night and other experiences that build positive memories.

Sinai Experience
The Sinai Experience, designed for pastors, is a spiritual formation experience. A daily selection of readings, prayers and recreational activities enable pastors to rest quietly in the presence of God. It is a deep, rich, life-changing encounter, described by one guest as "a honeymoon with God." It incorporates lectio divina and the Ignatian method as ways to interact with the Word and community time to share the journey. As with other programs, while there are suggestions for the entire day, guests are free to choose as many or as few as they desire and to go where God leads

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