February was a big month at the NACR! We had a full house as many of us gathered at Laity Lodge for our “first” annual recovery and spirituality retreat in partnership with Laity Lodge! Our first clue that this was going to be a “living large” weekend came when we wound through the canyon and approached a road (maybe that is a generous use of the word ‘road’) sign that read, “Turn left into the river”. And the sign actually meant – turn left into the river. Unlike one of our friends who arrived in a mini-cooper, our crew was in a Suburban and we drove into the river without extreme anxiety. Our driver/tour guide explained the dangers of entry when the river was flooding but hastened to add that even a flooded river only lasts for a few hours. Frankly, after our weekend, I wouldn’t have minded getting stuck at the lodge for weeks! This experience provided those of us passionate about the field of recovery a weekend away to recharge our batteries and explore our faith as a key component to healing. The location, hospitality, and companionship were all fantastic. Stephen Purcell, Laity’s Director set the tone of the weekend as he facilitated our experience; Matt Russell and Ian Cron hosted the speaker sessions; Andy Gullahorn gracefully led us in worship. Here are a few comments from attendees, I believe they speak most clearly about our time together:
This past weekend was a breath of fresh air and the breath of God breathed in me. The speakers presented in such an approachable manner, gathering the hearts of everyone present together. The staff at the lodge could not have been friendlier and more accommodating. Their servant hearts were evident the entire weekend. The sheer beauty of the location quiets your spirit and lends itself to time for silence and meditation. I realize how much I have been lacking my time spent in silence with God. The noise of life happens and I forget the one thing I need to flourish in the noise!
I have never experienced such holistic soul care. Every sense was touched, awakened, cared for. The architecture, food, amenities, staff, atmosphere, music, art, comradarie, silence, experiences – all served me exquisitely.
I was specifically inspired by the emphasis on meditation in recovery and it really hit home that continued prayer and meditation is a key part of my recovery. It has also inspired me to seek out more spiritual retreats as a regular part of my recovery program.
What’s next? We’ve got a few projects in the works, ways we hope you can connect, learn and obtain resources without leaving home – via the NACR website (www.nacr.org). Travis Reed, is working on some short films that we believe will capture the essence of our Laity Lodge experience – stay tuned! In October 2013, we are thrilled to report that we will offer another Breathe Conference – this time on the East Coast.
How can you participate? Plan on showing up, continue to explore the website as we work on providing you new tools using the web, give us a call to connect, invite us out to your place for a visit! We desperately want to continue to provide services at minimal cost to those who most need them and often cannot afford them. Making a financial contribution is another way you can participate, and help us help others.
Thanks for being part of the solution!