More than 650 women attended the Fullness of Joy 30th Anniversary Women’s Retreats at Nosoca Pines Ranch. The first weekend, October 4-6, 2019, was for the Hispanic women, and featured guest speaker Albert Handal, M.D., who lectured on women’s health issues and answered the many questions asked by the attendees. His wife, Darlene, also inspired the women with a personal testimony of her successful battle with cancer. The weekend was filled with inspiring music led by Giselle Rodriguez and Natasha Perez. Magaly Minaya presented devotionals which injected the women with a big dose of spiritual refreshment.
The overall atmosphere was one of joy, perhaps most noticeably on Saturday night when they had a friendly competition between churches for the best wedding dress design. Each church was given 20 minutes, a stack of newspaper, tape, and a pair of scissors. Together they had to design and create a wedding dress on one of their members. They then walked the runway as their creations were judged, and a winner was crowned. Attendees noted their pleasure in the teamwork and laughter that continued the entire evening. Laughter is like medicine, and this fun evening was just what the doctor ordered.
The second weekend of Fullness of Joy was held October 11-13, 2019, this time for the English-speaking women, and was equally as spiritually fulfilling and joyful. Lynn Ortel spoke about the challenges of life that get in the way of inner happiness, but how God has promised all that in His presence is fullness of joy! She inspired all to accept the gifts He provides and to let Him fill them to overflowing with “uncontainable joy.” The music, led by Carrissa Steen and Joni Bonotelia and accompanied by Jeanette McElroy and Carolyn Kendall, was a powerful time of worship.
The weekend was brimming with joy-filled moments like carriage rides, pontoon boat and canoe rides, Stretch Flex and Flow with Maria Touchard, painting with Kim Cove, smores by the lake, a photo booth with Colby Houser, an instant pot cooking class with Kerri Boone, breakout sessions by Susan Smith and Helen Faber, a Sabbath School lesson class with Erin Miller, and daily sunrise lakeside worship with Beth Grissom.
The weekend ended with a prayer breakfast, communion, and a blessing. The prayer breakfast was a feast for the eyes, mouth, and soul. Amy King and Grissom created an atmosphere for the weekend that was aesthetically stunning. “This was by far one of the happiest retreats I have ever been to,” said JoAlyce Waugh. There is no question: fullness of joy was everywhere.
Carolina | December 2019