Missionary Retreat 2019
Almost 30 current and former missionaries representing 9 different fields with a combined total of some 382 years of ministry for the Church of God (Holiness)—what an excellent group of people came together for the 2019 Missionary Retreat. Including children, board members, and helpers, our total attendance reached almost 60 individuals.
We wish you could have been at Harmony Hill last month to participate in this first event of its kind. You would have taken many walks down memory lane, heard stirring music, joined in prayer for the nations, and received exciting updates from current missionaries, both those present and those who joined by Skype.
The focus was “Celebrating the Journey,” and one highlight was presenting awards to all the missionaries present, tokens of our appreciation for their sacrificial service for the Master. We also paused to remember many workers from the past who paved the way on the field and now have gone ahead to their eternal reward.
Those present included: Lois Ann (Query) Bunn (not pictured)—Eastern Caribbean Paul, Lois & Jeanette Confer—Bolivia Rod Davis—Board Member Joe & Sherrel Dodson—Jamaica and Nigeria Larry, Christy, Lawrance, Amaziah & Jacob Doyle—Papua New Guinea Dennis & Shirley (Womack) Gordon—Eastern Caribbean Jere & Ruth Ann Gowin—Cayman Islands and Ghana Bill & Linda Hayton—Eastern Caribbean and Former Director Mervin & Judy Hershberger—Haiti Ray, Sharon & Amber Mauck—Jamaica Silas McGehee—Former Director Dan & Jeannie Merkley—Board Member Ken & Betty Peterson—Eastern Caribbean and Cayman Islands Dwight & Dorothy Purtle—Board Member Wayne & Mary Lou Sams—Jamaica and Cayman Islands Wayne Sumpter & Richard Sumpter—Cayman Islands Mark Surbrook—Haiti and Current Director Ed Tatum—Cayman Islands Bob & Cinda Thompson—Jamaica and Cayman Islands Joe & Faith Trussell—Bolivia and Board Member Ralph Wheeler—Former Director David, Zenia, Joseph & Noah Woods—Cayman Islands We are also grateful for the indispensable help of the following: Colleen Taylor and Dustin Taylor, Cooks Janice Witt and Maddie Taylor, Children’s Activities Dwight Purtle, Sound Technician Larry Goodwin, Videographer Crystal Billington, Photographer
One attendee responded with a note to Director Mark, saying, “Words fall way short for the heartfelt expression of gratitude to you and your incredible team in making this event one of a lifetime.” Many others also seemed to appreciate the event. And, most importantly, the Lord crowned the sessions with His presence and blessing.
In all, it was a brief but wonderful time together. The laughter, testimonies, and worship were surely a small taste of heaven.
In fact, the fellowship together reminded us of the glue that binds all those who know the sense of a calling from God to leave behind family, home churches, and associations to go to another culture and people to spread the greatest news known to man and win souls to Christ. The ministry and influence of these missionaries will go on touching lives until Jesus returns.
Jesus gives honor and a promise in Matthew 19:29 to those who leave houses or family or lands for the sake of His name, saying they shall receive a hundredfold in return and inherit eternal life. We honor these, our missionaries, for their dedication and service.
We are praying that others will hear the call of God to "go into all the world and make disciples." Who will answer, "Here am I send me"?