Women Sharing Hope Fall Retreat

Bobbi Stringer and Catherine Simpson

Retreats are a time away from normal activities, and they can have many purposes, including learning, motivation, relaxation, spiritual renewal, and refreshment, along with making new, lasting friendships. One could certainly say that the three-day Women Sharing Hope Fall 2022 Retreat, whose theme was “Lose Fear, Gain Purpose,” was successful in all of those areas. The retreat was held Oct. 18 through 20, at lovely Camp Copass on Lake Lewisville in the comfortable Talley Retreat Center, which felt more like a hotel than a camp. Cornhole, miniature golf, disk golf, a bonfire, and more were available on the campgrounds. Camp Copass is a hidden paradise from the outside world, making it possible for all worries and stress to be left at home.

The 28 attendees enjoyed the teaching of Dr. Elizabeth Vaughan, retired eye surgeon, author, and international missionary; Joyce Stanley, Christian counselor, author, and teacher on forgiveness; and Kathy Howard, national and international speaker, author, and Bible study writer.

On Tuesday, the speakers talked about FEAR and how to conquer it, and then on Wednesday, the topic switched to PURPOSE. The speakers discussed, first, how to find your purpose, next, how to be Fit for God’s use. Finally, the ultimate goal of showing God to others through godly character, telling others about God’s love, and bringing them into His family concluded the theme development. Additionally, Erika Cristantielli shared her memorable testimony of victory over drugs and the recent miraculous healing of restoring sight to her blind eye.

Thursday morning, a fourth speaker, Pastor Kim Broadstreet, pastor of Ponder First Baptist Church, delivered an inspirational message on the importance of “Now What? Serving, Not Just Being Served.”

Interspersed among the dynamic presentations of the speakers were singing, learning the salsa, playing games, eating ‘smores at the bonfire, participating in group activities, and awarding lots of door prizes. A skit written by Catherine Simpson called “Heaven or Bust” addressed the many misconceptions of what it takes to get into heaven. The actresses were from the Women Sharing Hope leadership team.

The retreat attendees laughed a lot, shed a few tears, met new friends, and walked away with a rekindled resolve about conquering fear and fulfilling their purpose in life.

The 5th Annual Spring Retreat for Women Sharing Hope is May 18 through 22, 2023, in Broken Bow, Okla. Three seven-bedroom houses next to each other have been reserved, so there is still space for you! Call or text Barbara Browning at 432-528-1118 for more information.