GA Leaders' Retreat

For the past two summers, Kentucky WMU has sponsored GA Leaders’ Retreats. Our first retreat in 2014 was at a Baptist camp. Leaders came from across Kentucky to learn from and share with other GA Leaders. We began the weekend with “Speed Dating.” GA leaders got into two lines. Each line faced the other. I called out questions and requests, such as, “Where are you from?” and “Tell about your favorite mission project with your Girls in Action.” Leaders shared information with the leaders in the opposite line. When the whistle blew, one line moved down and we started the next “date.” This activity really seemed to warm up the participants. GA Leaders were eager to share ideas. (But that just may be the nature of GA Leaders!) We introduced the “All for You” theme, but our main topic for the weekend was “Balance.” Leaders explored ways to balance the learning styles of their GAs. We also discussed ways to keep our own lives balanced and focused on God. Our scripture for the weekend was: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30). I confirmed what I had suspected about GA Leaders: They love crafts as much as GA! They worked well into the night creating “Smash Books.” They decorated journals with scrapbooking paper and decorative tape. These “Smash Books” could be used to keep records of GA, missions project ideas, and plans.

Our 2014 GA Leaders’ Retreat was so well received, we decided to have a retreat in both ends of the state in 2015. (If you look at a map of Kentucky, you’ll see why having two retreats is helpful for Kentucky GA leaders.) Our theme at these retreats was “Discipling GAs”. Of course, our example for discipling was Christ. We studied how he not only talked with his disciples but walked with them in ministry. We discussed the negative cultural influences on girls and how we as leaders might counteract their effects on girls. At the 2015 retreats, we learned crafts, recipes, and games from some of the places we would study in 2015–2016.

Perhaps one of the most meaningful activities from all of the retreats was “Prayer Circles.” As leaders arrived, they were assigned to a Prayer Circle. We tried to mix up leaders from the same church. During the weekend, leaders met in their Prayer Circles to pray for missionaries having birthdays and share prayer concerns about their GA groups. GA Leaders exchanged contact information so they could continue sharing after the retreats!

 

Stacy Nall is the children’s consultant at Kentucky WMU and a GA leader at Grafenburg Baptist Church, Shelbyville, KY.

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