Men’s ministry specialist to speak at this year’s United Methodist Men’s retreat

By George Hohmann

A certified mens ministry specialist will be the keynote speaker at the 2018 West Virginia United Methodist Mens Retreat and Circuit Rider Sept. 7-9 at Jackson’s Mill.

 The Rev. Mark Lubbock of Baton Rouge, La., will speak at several events at the retreat, announced Don Davis, president of the West Virginia men.

 Lubbock is a local pastor in the Louisiana Conference. He formerly served as pastor of three congregations.

As a certified mens ministry specialist he now helps churches in the conference establish effective ministries to and with men through Louisiana Men of Christ, an organization he founded.

This year’s retreat and Circuit Rider will also feature several educational workshops, including:

         * Disaster 101: A Brief Overview Highlighting the mission of the New Vision Depot and how United Methodist Men and Boy Scouts can get involved. Presented by Rev. Dan Lowther, co-ordinator of Disaster Response Ministries for the West Virginia United Methodist Annual Conference.

         * Youth Protection Class —Trainers Paul White and Gary Maffioli will conduct this class, which is required by the Boy Scouts of America for all individuals 18 years old and up who are around youth.

         *Make Spring Heights Your Retreat —Spring Heights is the United Methodist Camp and Retreat Center of the West Virginia Annual Conference. Rev. Shea James, the conferences director of youth and outdoor ministries, will explain why Spring Heights is ideal for large group gatherings like family reunions, scout troop gatherings and church picnics as well as for small groups like youth group retreats, camping trips and family getaways.

         * Share your story using Social Media: with over a billion users worldwide, social media is part of everyday life so why not make the best of it?! This workshop will be presented by Rev. Deborah Coble, the West Virginia Conference’s director of communications. It will cover best practices and tips for how to share your pictures and stories in ways that will help build your audience and celebrate your events and participants. Feel free to bring your questions and computer to follow along.

         * The History of the Labyrinth —For the fourth consecutive year, a large labyrinth will be set up for men and scouts to explore. Renee Verbanic, a Communities of Shalom volunteer, will offer an interactive slide presentation to help participants discover the fascinating history of labyrinths.

For more information about this year’s retreat visit the men’s website  and click on, “Scouts/Circuit Rider/Annual Gathering” or call Davis at 304 328-5491.