Providing a means for student growth, spiritual formation and community building, the Black Hills Retreat, one of many campus ministry outlets, will be commencing in the Black Hills of South Dakota for a final session this upcoming weekend.
The Lilly Grant, a $2 million contribution from the Lilly Endowment, has helped fuel numerous campus ministry and study abroad programs, summer ministries, and discipleship and multi-cultural internships.
After a five-year term and second reinstatement, the Lilly Grant is coming to a close. “The grant has been very helpful to NW in helping us to establish and enhance many programs—many that will continue,“ said Barb Dewald, Associate Dean of Spiritual Formation.
The Black Hills Retreat, one program that will end with the completion of the fund, focuses on relational, spiritual and personal development with opportunities to reflect, participate in devotions and connect with other students. “I was able to pause and ponder where God was leading me,” Abby Janzing said.
It is no question that the mission of the retreat has not ceased to impact NW students. With an overwhelming and stressful start to her freshman year, Jill Bird, now a junior, is thankful for the retreat.She said, “For the first time since coming to college, I was able to spend more time appreciating all that the Lord has created.”
After both a mentally and physically strenuous climb up Mt. Baldy, “Somehow I was able to make it to the top,” Bird said, “And many of the people who were in that climbing group have remained my good friends to this day.”