Annual Bloom Retreat
In September of 2018, 75 women in church planting gathered for the annual Bloom Retreat. This yearly experience provides an opportunity for church planting women to connect with Jesus and one another, invest in their leadership development, and be encouraged to lean into their own strengths in their own ministry contexts–regardless of her role in church planting. The retreat is for women in church planting, which includes all lead planters, co-planters, spouses of lead planters, paid staff members, and spouses of paid staff members.
Here’s just a few comments that women made about the 2018 Bloom Retreat:
- “I loved the honesty and vulnerability of the speakers and the women.”
- “[I loved] Connecting with other women who ‘get’ church planting.”
- “I am feeling more equipped as a result of the sessions/breakouts.”
- “…it can be intimidating to be around a bunch of women for a couple days straight. I was definitely anxious when Tuesday approached. But that’s why I appreciated you calling that out in a way that acknowledges people’s feelings and fears. It overall helped make raw relationships with others.”
- “Loved reconnecting with friends. Loved how every element was so carefully thought out and woven together.”
Last year, after everything was cleaned up and women from all around the country were heading home, I got in my car and soaked up a little extra silence after two full days at the retreat. I remember taking a deep breath as I got on the highway and saying to God: “Wow. That was really really fun.” I didn’t include that in the post-retreat data, but as one of the leaders for this annual experience, I can admit that while this event takes a great deal of work and intention, every single minute of it is worth it.
As of today, there are 95 women registered for the 2019 Bloom Retreat, September 17 – 19 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Yes–more women than last year are already registered! Preparations are already being made, with every detail of the two-day schedule being considered as our team plans this experience. The retreat includes main sessions with musical worship and passionate messages, creative elements and experiences, breakout sessions, connection opportunities with women in similar roles in church planting, and quiet time alone to rest and recharge.
Our theme this year will focus on our own unique, God-given identities: a continuation of the discussion from Bloom’s most recent book project Named + Known. We want to create a sacred space where women can experience spirit and soul care alongside women who are also starting churches.
If you or someone you know is interested in attending this year’s retreat, time is running out to register! Because we drastically subsidize costs to keep costs low for attendees, we limit the registration to 125 women. If you register before Memorial Day, this retreat is only $75 (including everything except for travel to and from the retreat). This is an incredible value and it is very likely that we will sell out. You can register on the following page: https://stadiachurchplanting.org/bloom/liveevents/.
To our brothers in Christ in church planting: would you commit to praying for the women who are already registered or are dreaming about registering for this event? It takes a village for women to prepare their lives away from home and many women struggle to step away from their responsibilities. Pray that this event would be a marker for these women; that they would know that they are not alone in their lives and roles in church planting.
I cannot wait to hear each woman’s story who will be at this event–Charlotte, North Carolina, here we come!