Outreach Canada Website
/Monday, May 16, 2022
Outreach 2022 Staff Retreat Update
Forty-one Members of our Outreach Canada (OC) family met in the last week of April 2022. We gathered at local retreat center in the Frazer Valley. Some flew in from all over Canada, some drove across the country meeting along the way with other OC staff. Some arrived early or stayed following the retreat, in homes, to continue refreshing relationships and continuing face-to-face interactions with other team members. Throughout the Covid pandemic, we had not been physically present together as a staff; the last time we were able to gather was April 2019. All who came were grateful for this opportunity.
Half of those who attended are new to the OC family and had never physically met other OC staff. During the pandemic, OC utilized technology to execute our mission. For the past two years, our staff effectively continued to grow and expand our ministry teams.
In light of this, we planned time into the retreat schedule for all of us to just be with each other. Mealtimes were significant in allowing each one to sit with others they had not yet met. We arranged daycare for those who brought their children. Being together, getting to know each other, is thought by some to be the most important takeaway from the retreat.
A Family of Ministries
Each morning, we worshiped our Savior in singing and prayer, and our Executive Director, Dr. Craig Kraft, used the story of the Donner Party from the 1800’s to talk about mission and caring for each other and our world. That story is an example of how in extremely demanding situations, God is always there, and people can still love and persevere because God is there.
Each of our teams gave a report and update to the entire team. Lorna Johnston heads up the Diaspora Team and spoke about the various diaspora ministries, including the Loving Muslims Together and the Simply Mobilizing Canada teams. Chris Morris, our Corporate Chaplains Canada Director, used the time to get names from the whole team, of people/organizations who may be interested in a chaplain’s program. Craig Kraft had members of the Church in Canada Team report on the work they engage in, and Mike Fietje introduced the MORE Network team and spoke about the upcoming transition retreats happening over the summer for cross-cultural workers and their families.
Some of the teams met as individual teams during free time to help the members get to know each other better. Some played games in the evening, others had fun around a campfire, and one, Craig Kraft, left for brief time to welcome his first granddaughter into the world.
Frankly, we were missing each other, and this retreat gave all a shot of adrenaline to take with them. This was one of those retreats where all were glad they attended.
To find out more about our family of ministries, visit our OC Ministries Page.