Monday, November 2, 2009

Annual retreat

This weekend I went on a 24-hour church retreat. It was a great way to spend Halloween weekend. No offense to anyone who went trick-or-treating, but Halloween is one American holiday which I don't miss! :)

It was a double blessing because it DIDN'T RAIN all weekend! It was sooooo nice to see the sun (even though the days are very short).

On Friday evening, everyone made their way to the retreat after work. A few church members cooked supper, which we ate before beginning the worship service.


Throughout Friday evening and Saturday until closing, we shared "psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs" and had lessons on various topics for the purpose of edification.

As usual, we went home tired, but happy...


  1. I concur with not missing that day! So, the retreat---all in Russian?

  2. I just can't get into the spirit of Halloween as evil, or even scary.... I guess it was because there was never even a tinge of that in my growing-up experiences. My brother and I dressed as a cowboy and a pioneer girl year after year and enjoyed going out door to door in the dark with mom or dad. Somehow someone gave me the idea that we should do a "trick" and if someone was unwise enough after we said "Trick or Treat" to say "Trick" I would recite the Gettysburg Address.

    The retreat looks wonderful, though - who are the members of your church? Russians? Americans? A mix? What sort of church is it?

  3. We always dressed up as something "fun" and not evil. But still, it doesn't bring up nostalgia the way other holidays do. I mostly remember being cold.

    My church is all Russians, although many of them have worked as interpreters, so have had cross-cultural experiences. The worship leader, for example, likes Gospel music.

    One woman brought her husband, an American, to the retreat (they usually go to another church). But the program was all in Russian.

    It is an evangelical Protestant church. No particular denomination, but sort of a mix of Baptist and Charismatic, if you can imagine that.

  4. Actually, I can think of some Halloween memories. We ordered pizza for dinner sometimes. We carved pumpkins. I can picture their lights flickering on the steps. Some of the neighbors gave out particular treats each year, and we planned our routes accordingly. There were often scary rumors about poisoned candies and kidnappings and such. We gave out hot chocolate mix.

  5. Hi Elizabeth,

    I've been reading your blog for some time, and reviewed it in Blogged, also. It has a gentle but realistic spirit, and I feel you represent your Christian life in an exemplary way.

    I am a Scottish-American Presbyterian from Flemington NJ who also has a blog located in the Northern Capital. Is it OK that I added you to my Recommended Blogs list, and would you consider adding my blog to your sites list?

    Regardless, I wish you and your community happiness and success in your good works in St Petersburg.

    Rob MacDonald... Loquacious

  6. Nice to meet you, Rob! I actually have Scottish roots. Thanks for your review! You can keep my blog on your list, and I will add yours after I check it out, as long as there is nothing I disagree with!


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