YIB (Your Intrepid Blogger) is working some of the Grace Brethren churches in the Sunshine State this weekend as we prepare to attend the South Focus Retreat in Haines City, Florida, this Monday through Wednesday.
This morning I was at the Gulfview Grace Brethren Church in Port Richey, Florida (pictured) where Pastor Jim Poyner and his lovely congregation gave me a great welcome as I displayed BMH Books products and talked a bit in the morning service about the ministry of Brethren Missionary Herald Co.
Retired Grace Brethren pastor Warren Tamkin and his wife, Lois, attended the church and live during the winter in the park just behind the church property. So we had lunch together and then they gave me a personalized tour of the Word of Life facility and grounds just north and east of Port Richey.
Then on to Brooksville, where Fellowship Coordinator Tom Avey had preached in the morning and met with church leadership as Pastor Lee Friesen has announced his retirement effective about May 31.
I hunted up Lee at his lovely house in the development behind the church building and we chatted for about 45 minutes about our churches in Florida, his pending retirement, and much more.
Tomorrow it’s on to Orlando for some prospective-author contact and then to Haines City with 25 of God’s choice servants for the Focus Retreat at the FFA camp facility on Lake Pierce. FGBC Moderator Tim Boal will lead the retreat, which will focus on the Pauline epistles and the biblical definition of “church” as portrayed in Tim’s recent BMH book, Building Authentic Community. Each person attending the retreat will receive a copy of the book.
This retreat concludes mid-morning Wednesday. One Focus Retreat remains in the current cycle–that will be for the northwest, and it will be held at Camp Clear Lake near White Pass in the Cascade Mountains of Washington state, the dates of May 14-16. Log onto the FGBC webpage for more information or to register.