Retreat helps discern God's call

8/14/2007

Special to the Advocate

Clergy and laity alike often seek ways to get congregation members more involved in the life of a church.

Others are involved, but aren’t sure they’re doing what they’re cut out to do.

Discover God’s Call is a retreat ministry designed to help people discover or affirm what their spiritual gifts are and how God might be calling them to minister in their local church and personal life. As a result of a Discover retreat, many have found new and more effective ways to be involved in their church’s ministry.

The next Discover God’s Call retreat is Nov. 2 at Camp Wesley Pines in Gallman. The registration deadline is Sept. 21. The cost is $145 and a number of scholarships are available. The retreat begins with lunch Friday and ends with lunch Sunday. Pastors receive 1.5 CEUs.

The retreat actually begins at home with a 26-day study of spiritual gifts and explores different ways laypeople have “broadened their borders” by learning and applying their spiritual gifts. In this study, participants listen to a teaching series on CD by Kenneth Kinghorn on the spiritual gifts and how they are to be used. After listening to the teaching series, they complete a spiritual gifts inventory which will help understand what their particular gifts are.

Once at the retreat, exploration continues with the affirmation of those gifts and options of how they might be used in ministry in the local church. Retreat leaders also strive to have spirited praise and worship, ministry times, an effective prayer ministry and a speaker during the weekend.

“I highly recommend DGC to anyone desiring to find or affirm their place within the body of Christ.  A DGC weekend will provide an environment to learn and hear from God,” said the Rev. Carl Heberg.

“St. Andrews UMC in Amory has established a prayer room as a result of a specific call received by two of our church members who attended a retreat. This has been a wonderful addition to our prayer and member care ministries,” said Debbie Andrews of Amory.

At the fall retreat, the guest speaker will be Taylor Gallman, son of the late conference evangelist, Andrew Gallman. Taylor Gallman is pastor at Alabama City UMC in Gadsden, Ala. He believes in a holistic approach to ministry and the gospel of Christ. Since coming into the ministry, Gallman has been involved with the Wind of the Spirit Ministry, a United Methodist evangelistic ministry which teaches in healing academies all over the world. He has served on 25 short-term mission trips to different parts of the world. 

“I urge anyone who has gone to Emmaus or Cursillo to attend a Discover God’s Call retreat. It is not a repeat of that experience, but is a wonderful complement. God will build on your previous experience to show you where and how he wants you to show his love in everyday life and in your church,” said Debra Galloway of Benton.