Retired UCC Servants Retreat

Participants at the 2018 Retired Servants Retreat

An Event for intellectual stimulation; spiritual enlightenment and reflection; and renewing friendships and/or making new friends for Retired UCC Clergy, Missionaries, Volunteer Ministry Workers and Spouses of the Southeast and Southern Conferences of the United Church of Christ. Co-sponsored with Blowing Rock Conference Center.

Monday -Wednesday, October 7-9, 2019
Blowing Rock Conference Center, Blowing Rock, North Carolina

Costs for the Events are as follows:

One night $50; two nights $75; three nights $100; four nights $125 (1 or 2 in each room. All rooms have two full-size beds))

Total cost for 5 meals and facility fee ($7.00 per event per person) from Monday dinner – Wednesday breakfast: $59.25 per person.

  • Two night stay for one plus meals: $75 + $59.25 = $134.25
  • Two night stay for two plus meals: $75 + (2 x $59.25) = $193.50
  • Three night stay for one plus meals: $100 + $59.25 = $159.25
  • Three night stay for two plus meals: $100 + (2 x $59.25) = $218.50

If there are a minimum of 20 people interested in lunch on Monday, we will serve lunch for $10.25. Starting Tuesday of the retreat there will be a sign-up sheet for those wanting a sack lunch for Wednesday. The cost is $8.

If there are 25 persons arriving Sunday night who are interested in a light breakfast, BRCC will also serve a continental breakfast on Monday at 8 am for $5.

Please register by contacting Ms. Amy Stamey, reservations manager at Blowing Rock Conference Center, at 828-295-7813 or [email protected]

Emails are welcome and I will send out a confirmation. Information she needs:

  • Day of arrival and approximate time of arrival for 1 or 2 people (If you are  leaving before Wednesday please let her know)
  • Would you like a continental breakfast on Monday morning?
  • Would you like lunch on Monday?
  • Do you require a ground floor room or do you have a room preference?

Directions to Blowing Rock Conference Center:

LOCAL DIRECTIONS (Once you have reached Blowing Rock)

Blowing Rock Conference Center is located in the town of Blowing Rock. At the stoplight at the corner of NC Highway 321 Bypass and Possum Hollow Road (Tanger Outlet Mall is located at this corner), turn on to Possum Hollow Road.  When you have turned onto Possum Hollow Road:

  • Follow Possum Hollow 0.7 miles to a stop sign
  • Turn LEFT onto Sunset Drive. Continue 0.2 miles to the stop
  • Turn LEFT onto Goforth Road and continue for approximately .6 miles; you will see the entrance to BRCC just ahead on your right.
  • Turn RIGHT and follow the road to the main parking

Participants arriving on Sunday, October 6, are invited to share a meal at 6:00 pm [at a local restaurant to be determined prior to the event].

At 8:00 pm, a Taize/Iona vesper/worship service will be offered in the chapel at the Blowing Rock Conference Center.

Coordinator for Retreat: Rev. Larry Bolick [email protected] 828-612-8146 (mobile)

Box lunch available for pickup after the last session to eat on the road or in the Dining Room with free beverage bar available. Sign up for this lunch will begin on Tuesday during the retreat. Look for a clipboard at the front desk to sign up.

Bios of Leadership

Larry Bolick served 32 years as a parish minister in Western North Carolina Association and 11.5 years as Director of Spiritual Life and Chaplain of Abernethy Laurels Retirement Community, Newton, NC, United Church Homes and Services. He is a member of Grace UCC, Newton and associate member of First UCC, Salisbury, NC. This is his third year on the planning committee.

Bonita Hooper is a retired high school teacher and married to Rev. Michael Hooper, who has also served on the Retreat Planning Committee.  They are members of First Reformed UCC, Lexington, NC. This is her second year on the planning committee.

Trish Towle Greeves, a retired UCC pastor, has served churches in Virginia, Minnesota, and Georgia.  She taught religious leadership classes at United Seminary of Twin Cities and currently teaches online courses for the Pathways Theological Education Program of Southeast Conference.  She resides in Roswell, GA and is very active in her UCC church.  She is the author of Prophetic Faith:  Exploring Social Justice Advocacy as a Congregation, which we used for Retreat discussion in 2017. This is her third year of the planning committee.

Ed Olson taught at the University of Maryland (College Park) and Baldwin-Wallace College (Berea, Ohio) for 40 years. He is a member of the NTL Institute of Applied Behavioral Science, a National Certified Counselor, and formerly an organization development consultant to many companies and government agencies. Currently he teaches in the MBA program in the graduate school of the University of Maryland (online) and leads workshops for churches and the Chautauqua Institution in applying complexity theory and quantum theory to issues in science, spirituality, and religion. Author of And God Created Wholeness: A Spirituality of Catholicity (2018, Orbis Books); Finding Reality: Four Ways of Knowing (2014, Archway Publications); Keep the Bathwater: Emergence of the Sacred in Science and Religion (2009, Island Sound Press); Facilitating Organization Change: Lessons from Complexity Science (2001, Jossey-Bass/Wiley) and numerous papers and presentations at national and international conferences.  This is his first year on the planning committee.

Clarice Mitchell is a second career pastor who served for fifteen years at Hope UCC in Florida. A graduate of Andover Newton Theological Seminary she has continued her education by completing the course work in Spiritual Formation at Columbia Theological School in Decatur, GA. Over the years she took classes in a variety of subjects from the Florida School for Pastors and the Alban Institute to name a few.   In 2012 Hope UCC and Clarice worked with the Center for Progressive Renewal in Florida.  Clarice also received training as an interim minister and served Cocoa Beach Community Church UCC as a bridge interim.  Change happened in many different ways during her fifteen years at Hope including a successful capital campaign, voting to be ONA, installing screens in the Sanctuary and others.  This is her second year on the planning committee. She and husband Tom are members of Pleasant Hill Community in TN

Nancy Beard is President of United Church Homes and Services Foundation, Newton, NC. Vice-President of North Carolina Council of Charitable Gift Planners, past President for Association of Fund-Raising Professionals. She is a Life Coach and excited about coaching fund development professionals in the non-profit sector.

Marie Fortune is Founder and Senior Analyst at FaithTrust Institute. She is a pastor, author, educator and practicing ethicist and theologian. Marie grew up in North Carolina where she received her undergraduate degree from Duke University. She received her seminary training at Yale Divinity School and was ordained a minister in the United Church of Christ in 1976. After serving in a local parish, she founded the Center for the Prevention of Sexual and Domestic Violence, now known as FaithTrust Institute, in 1977 where she served as Executive Director until 1999 and now serves as Founder and Senior Analyst. FaithTrust Institute is a national, multifaith, multicultural organization providing religious communities and advocates with training, consultation and educational materials to address the faith aspects of abuse. She was Editor of The Journal of Religion and Abuse from 2000–2008 and served on the National Advisory Council on Violence Against Women for the U.S. Department of Justice (1995–2000) and the Defense Task Force on Domestic Violence for the U.S. Department of Defense (2000–2003). Marie and Anne live at Uplands Village in Pleasant Hill TN.

Clara Benson is a retired UCC clergy person living with her husband, Jim, in Goose Creek, S.C. She is a member of Circular Congregational UCC in Charleston where she serves as a chaplain on call, a member of the Spiritual Care Team, and occasionally co-facilitates spiritual retreats and other small groups. After working as social worker/counselor for 15 years, she obtained a Masters in Divinity and was ordained at 2nd UCC in Lexington N.C. She served a church in Southern Illinois and one in Pennsylvania prior to her retirement in 2012.  This is her fifth year on the planning committee.

Clarence “Curly” Stumb retired as Executive Director of John’s River Valley Camp in 2017 after 35 years and is editor of E-News of Southern Conference and a member of High Country UCC, Vilas, NC.  This is his first year on the Planning Committee.

Wayne Gardner completed several years of interim ministry with Oakland Christian UCC, Suffolk, VA and has been pianist for the past three years.  Due to health issues, he will not be able to attend this year and Carol Fonville has graciously agreed to serve as our pianist this year.

2019 Planning Team

UCC from Southeast Conference Area:

UCC from Southern Conference Area: