I have spent the last three days on a retreat or breakaway with the other ministers of the Cape of Good Hope District of the Methodist Church. While I never like being away from home this was time well-spent.
This was my fourth retreat in the district and the best thing for me is that I am actually getting to know the other ministers. The retreats last year were difficult because the faces were nearly all strange to me. There are still some ministers for whom I haven't quite managed to put name to face, but most I can identify!
Retreats aren't really the time of quiet and restoration that the term suggests. There is business and conferencing to do, which are necessary (unless one prefers a top down approach without discussion and buy in!)
However I think we are moving towards having more growth time. This retreat we had retired Anglican bishop Geoff Quinlan speaking to us on the book of Colossians and it was great. We also had times of silence and reflection and group discussions.
I'm not sure that I am refreshed - rather tired and I inevitably seem to come back from retreats with a cold - but it was a worthwhile time and space. My personal takeaway was (again) the need for more prayer in my life. I know that I am going to get there, the momentum is building! Today I downloaded to my Kindle the book "Rooted in Love" by fellow South African blogger Margaret Blackie. This is a practical guide to Ignatian Spirituality and I am looking forward to journeying through it.