August 9 is Women’s Day in South Africa. We thought it a good time to have our first post-COVID women’s retreat around that date.
From beginning to end, the event was marked by a very palpable need for communing with one another and several emotional encounters happened where we could share in one another’s grief and minister with great compassion. Since we last saw each other, many of us lost loved ones, jobs, businesses, and others suffered natural disasters. All that hurt and grief came to the surface, and we were grateful to God that he made this retreat possible.
The topics chosen by the various speakers from different church areas also leaned into the mood of things and one got the feeling that, “It Can Only Be God!” That was also the theme for the retreat.
We had pastor Carolyna Katengeza from GC Malawi as a guest speaker, and she really blessed us with her presence and her message.
Activities at the retreat were early morning devotions hosted by different regions and one could hear them singing in the chapel at around 6:00 a.m. as a signal for all to come. We had an African-themed day and a gala dinner as the grand finale. The staff at Aruka really pulled out all the stops and made every experience memorable.
We had about 60 ladies in attendance with most regions in the country represented. Those who could not make it, sent their greetings via video messaging.
One of the most special activities we had was a clothes exchange! Each one brought clothing items in good condition that they do not need or want anymore. We displayed these and everyone went looking for what they want or need. Whatever was left was donated to the needy. This was such a feel-good activity and very helpful.
It was very hard to leave the place at the end of the retreat and it made the promise of the next one even sweeter.
By Margaret Musekwa
Webmaster for GCI Solid Rock Church in Riviera, Republic of South Africa
One thought on “Women of Faith Retreat – South Africa”
Carolyna Katengeza!! Greetings from Ohio, dear sister!! Many memories of similar gatherings spring to mind as I saw your picture and read about the women’s gathering. What a blessing to see and thank you, Margaret, for sharing!
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