Minnesota’s Fan Into Flame retreat always seems to come at the perfect time for students at the University of Minnesota (UMN) and the University of St. Thomas (UST). Just when schoolwork picks up and stress levels rise, God gives His children an opportunity to:
- get away for the weekend
- to encounter a loving and joyful community (many for the first time)
- to enter into a deeper relationship with all three persons of the Trinity
One of our many student leaders, Mitch Gutenberg ( UMN junior) had a few thoughts and reflections from the weekend:
“This was my third Fan Into Flame, and I truly felt prepared for everything on this retreat. There’s nothing like the first night at the camp where everyone is full of excitement and anticipation. The mix of nearly 200 students from the University of St. Thomas, University of Minnesota, St. Cloud State University, and a few out-of-town schools all coming together created such a positive energy.
I was a small group leader this time around, and it was incredibly clear to me that God was working in each of my small group men, through different struggles they each carried on their shoulders. They were all very open and willing to share which, to me, showed a great trust in the Lord. Their vulnerability showed me a true belief that this retreat could have a huge affect on their lives.
We spent a whole days worth of preparing our hearts for a greater release of the Holy Spirit into our lives through talks and group discussions. Once Saturday night arrived, we joined together for a time of group prayer and worship. I was a little apprehensive going into it. A lot of my small group guys hadn’t had a lot (or any) experience with charismatic prayer. So as we entered into a state of prayer, I welcomed Him to use me however He saw fit in order for Him to work. As we began to pray over one another, I was blown away at the depth which my brothers were willing to invite the Lord into their lives.
I am always so thankful for this retreat and awestruck by the community of believers that I have been blessed to come to know and call my brothers and sisters in Christ. The atmosphere of this retreat is something that I have only ever experienced when with these men and women who are so whole heartedly giving their lives up to the Lord. There is so much joy, passion, and love that I could never do justice to in mere words. I am grateful that I have been given the opportunity to have been a part of this amazing experience.”
Check out more pictures on our Flickr page!