Retreat Enables Young Adults to Just 'BE'

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While the world seems full of stimulation and activities demanding our constant attention, young adults will take a break from it all Jan. 2-4 at the Simpsonwood Retreat Center in Atlanta, Ga.

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wanted to help give young adults a place to reconnect with God, and re-center themselves in the midst of the hustle and bustle of their lives.

While the world seems full of stimulation and activities demanding our constant attention, young adults will take a break from it all Jan. 2-4 at the Simpsonwood Retreat Center in Atlanta, Ga.

The Young Adult Sabbath Retreat is a ministry for and with young adults in The United Methodist Church, though any young adult has been invited to attend. The retreat is supported by the Division on Ministries with Young People of the United Methodist General Board of Discipleship.

This is the first event of its kind sponsored by the division. It was developed by young adults, many who are also in seminary. According to Julie O'Neal of the division, the creators of the retreat "wanted to help give young adults a place to reconnect with God, and re-center themselves in the midst of the hustle and bustle of their lives."

During this retreat, participants will have opportunities to spend focused time in each of four theme areas. However, in any area, the young adults are invited just to "Be."

They can "Be in Worship" through time at the altar, with a spiritual director, praying, reading or walking the labyrinth. They can "Be in Relationship" through letter writing, sharing stories or studying theology of songs or movies. They may "Be in Solitude" resting, reflecting, journaling or spending time outdoors. Or they may "Be in Play" through art, games, massage and yoga.

This and more will enable the young adult attendees to rest, renew and rejuvenate their spiritual beings.

The time together will begin with a "Focus on Funk." It is a time to recognize that all is not right and there are times when we break down, stress out, and become confused and lonely. It is a time when young adults may be out their searching for answers that only God may provide.
After the opening night, the rest of the time will provide the young adults with their opportunity to "Be."

If we are to "renew existing faith communities" as one of The United Methodist Church's areas of focus suggests, than providing a time to renew young adults is important to that. It is hoped that these young adult participants will return home from the time of rest, rejuvenated to live forth as fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ.

More information about the Young Adult Sabbath Retreat may be found online at http://www.yanetwork.org/sabbath or by contacting Julie O'Neal at 615-340-7025 or joneal @ gbod.org.

GBOD's mission is to support annual conference and local church leaders for their task of equipping world-changing disciples. An agency of The United Methodist Church, GBOD is
located at 1908 Grand Ave. in Nashville, Tenn. Visit http://www.gbod.org for more information or call the Media Relations Office toll free at (877) 899-2780, Ext. 7017.

GBOD Media Relations Office
Jeanette Pinkston, Director
(615) 340-7017 (O)
(615) 604-7669 (C)
jpinkston @ gbod.org

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