We laughed, we played, we ate, we sang, we prayed, and each of us grew deeper in our faith. The weekend began with the group arriving to the peaceful retreat at Pine Creek in Gore, VA. We took in the natural surroundings with the Appalachian mountains peeking at us along the horizon. What a blessing for our group of nearly a dozen teenage girls and their leaders to experience!
The agenda for the weekend consisted of prayer, two lessons, an inflatable obstacle course and reflection stations designed to encourage the students and make them feel loved. We had a lot of time for fun but the reflection stations were by far the most popular event of the trip.
“The retreat was so much fun! I wish we had stayed longer! I loved that I was able to see so many stars at night. I liked doing the stations. It was so peaceful,” remarked Hazel.
At the first station the students were treated to a mini-hand spa by a fellow student who now helps lead the group. She would laugh with them and encourage them, making each one feel loved as she came through. At the next station girls created personal Bible verse cards to bring home. They chose from verses affirming who they are and how God loves them. Each girl took their time decorating these cards and personalizing them with stickers and gel pens. From here students received one-on-one prayer and a personal letter speaking speaking affirmation and powerful words of encouragement to each one of them. Many students were very touched by this powerful experience. Finally, each girl personally wrote words of encouragement to one another. At the end, each of them received their very own card filled with encouraging words like, “Caring, pretty and fun.”
To wrap up the trip, students and leaders participated in the inflatable obstacle course. It was a blast! Students decided to unite against their leaders in friendly competition. The girls encouraged one another and were also encouraged by staff at Pine Creek Retreat Center.
We would like to thank Pine Creek Retreat Center, our prayer team of Lissette and Mariangel, everyone who supports these endeavors and the dedicated leaders who volunteer not only their time but their open hearts with these teenage girls week in and week out. The retreat really made a positive impact on all of us and we look forward to the next one!