Save the Date for LEAD Retreat—

At CDM, we love connecting people to people and people to resources.  My favorite time to do this is at our annual children’s ministry retreat. One quote that was shared with a children’s ministry team member after this year’s retreat was, “It’s the one place I can come, and I don’t have to explain myself.”  I’m so thankful for this encouraging, beautiful, worshipful gathering each year.

These are a few of my favorite things I saw at the retreat this year.

  • Laughter around the fire pit
  • First time attenders being drawn in
  • Certification students meeting each other in-person
  • Spontaneous gatherings of prayer
  • Pastors and others ministering to specific needs
  • Everyone sitting with different people at meals
  • Undistracted worship
  • Shared ideas for similar church contexts
  • Bookstore purchases for our homes and churches
  • Laughter about paper plate awards (you had to be there for this one)
  • Unique friendships formed over roommates unknown before the retreat
  • Brothers and sisters in Christ serving each other
  • Ridge Haven’s loving hospitality
  • 65-year-olds encouraging 25-year-olds (and vice versa)

Everyone was also encouraged through the Scriptures. We were reminded that God is doing His work and we are privileged to be a part of it. It’s God’s working in us and our faithfulness in walking with Him that guides everything we do. Workshops were also an encouragement as we were better equipped for ministry in thinking about the long view of discipleship.

Next year we are calling our retreat LEAD retreat. Leading, equipping and discipling children and volunteers is the common bond that draws us together each year. This simple name change (from LTR) clarifies why we gather. We come together to sharpen each other and be filled up in order to better pour out into others.

I hope you’ll save the date for LEAD retreat next year, April 9-11, 2024 at Ridge Haven. Jason Helopoulos, author of several books including Let the Children Worship and A Neglected Grace,  will be joining us along with our fabulous children’s ministry team and CDM staff. We truly feast together each year and I’m already praying that we will taste and see God’s goodness together and take this feast back to our own churches.

Katie Flores is Children’s Ministry Coordinator for the PCA’s Committee on Discipleship Ministries. Katie oversees the effort of CDM to connect and equip those who serve in discipleship ministry to children. She develops and reviews resources to help those who work with children and youth and conducts training for church leaders, staff, and volunteers.