Casper, Wyoming“Fully Alive” was both the theme and a declaration of the 90 participants during the 31st annual Winter Retreat. They came from across Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico, February 14-16, to Mills Spring Ranch in Casper, Wyoming.

The weekend began with a snow-cat ride over five feet of accumulated snow for nearly a mile in order to reach the warm cabins. Participants expressed the “Fully Alive” theme, through energetic worships led by Lyle Wortman from Gillette Wyoming, and by engaging in biblical teachings presented by Henry Johnson, young adult ministries director for the Carolina Conference.

“These meetings were truly Spirit-filled,” commented Brent Learned, RMC assistant youth director. The weekend included outdoor recreational activities–snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, sledding, and snowmobiling. “Everyone was excited about this weekend filled with worship, fun, and building meaningful relationships,” Brent said.

The first official meeting began Friday evening with “Wine, Witness, and Why?” a presentation by Johnson on John, Chapter 2, explaining the significance of Jesus’ first miracle of turning the water in the containers, used by the Jews for ceremonial purification, into wine. Saturday’s worship was preceded by the baptism of Ezekiel Gillham by his grandfather Pastor Steve Gillham, director of La Vida Mission, located in New Mexico. The retreat’s concluding worship by Henry Johnson took place on Sunday morning, during which he compared and contrasted the recorded reactions of disciples Peter and Judas during Jesus’ final hours of ministry on earth.

“The speaker was amazing, had lots of energy, and made me see Jesus in a new way! Can’t wait to come back next year,” commented Bobbie Jo Tucker, who came to Casper along with her youth group from the Assembly of God Church in Gillette, Wyoming.

“The music team was energetic and inspiring. Visiting with friends was heartwarming,” said Brenda Young from Platteville.

“It was spiritually and physically reinvigorating. It was great,” exclaimed Sydney Cornett, a student from Campion Academy.

Brent Learned; text and photos