13th Annual Silver Bay Gathering
Earlier this month, friends came together for an annual gathering held at the beautiful Silver Bay YMCA.
Chaplains, Christian Mission Directors, Pastors serving in YMCA-based churches and other Y leaders attended.
The purpose of the gathering has remained constant through the years. Starting with a group of eight friends who gathered 13 years ago, this year 72 individuals were in attendance—representing 17 different states. They all came to this time with their own unique load of responsibilities and cares, but they left encouraged and renewed. While there were times of instruction and opportunities to learn, the purpose of this week has always been to refresh those who are on the front lines of ministry in the Y.
This time has become a yearly highlight for many of the attendees. The trip is worth the investment of time and resources for those who attend. The Bible says that “as iron sharpens iron so one man sharpens another.” This retreat provides the tools and relationships necessary for that type of sharpening. Attendees are challenged spiritually, exposed to new ideas for their work and ministry and given the opportunity to share their lives with others who are walking similar journeys in the YMCA.
Relationships are built and renewed through meaningful dialogue in sessions and breakouts. Guests have time to worship, pray, rest, fellowship and have fun doing recreational activities. Fall in the Adirondacks is gorgeous, and Lake George is an idyllic setting for such a gathering.
What started as a grassroots gathering of friends has now become an anticipated annual pilgrimage for spiritual leaders in YMCAs big and small. Stay connected to the USMN for more information on next year’s Silver Bay gathering and other opportunities to be equipped for your own ministry within the YMCA.
“We connect through US Mission Network to learn what God is doing in YMCAs across the world and how we may implement some of those ideas in our Y as well as share those ideas with every YMCA we possibly can.”
—Bob Krafft, CEO, YMCA of DeKalb County