This year, 45 students and several adult leaders participated in Christ Redeemer Church’s annual Summer Youth Retreat at the Kull Youth Center in Ocean City, NJ from July 6th through July 11th.
Each evening, Pastor Don Willeman, Abrm McQuarters, or Chris Audino gave messages on the retreat theme of ”The Voice of Truth in a World of Truth Decay.” The following morning, students were given the opportunity to reflect on these messages during a personal devotion time followed by small group discussions. Afternoons were spent enjoying the beach, exploring the boardwalk, and playing beach volleyball.
As has become a tradition, each morning, several people woke up early to see the sunrise. Special thanks to the volunteers who ran the kitchen for the week, the student music team, and the handful of folks who shared their testimonies during the nightly programs!
“The overarching theme was ‘The Voice of Truth’ – Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. It was just incredible. We saw people deeply moved and intrigued by what God had done for them on the cross and we saw relationships reconciled and people worshipping God. It was a very convicting an fruitful time for everyone there.
But personally, two things were heavy on my mind. One of those being, my sin was really revealed to me but so was God’s grace. He showed me that he is the one who holds on to me and that he is continually pursuing me, that Jesus is the founder and protector of my faith as it says in Hebrews 12. The second being the importance of being in the Bible daily. Just hearing, reading, studying, memorizing, and meditating on God’s word is really important and one of the key things that became evident to me over this week was that doing this creates and intimate relationship with God where you are continually pursuing him as he pursues you…
It’s truly a blessing to be on a humbling and enriching trip with people that I can truly say are my family in Christ.”
~Jake Willeman, senior
“We try to live by ‘work hard, play hard.’ I think in this retreat it’s ‘work hard, think hard.’ The gospel is clearly out there in the morning, in the evenings, in discussion times. Sin is talked about. The Savior is lifted up. Saving faith is the means by which we are saved. But we play hard and we have a lot of fun.”
~Jason Achmoody, adult leader
For a full recording of Jake and Jason’s comments, click here.