This month, H2O Church is offering a socially distanced version of their yearly men’s and women’s weekends. Women’s Weekend and Manmaker are one day, in-person retreats that give students the opportunity to gather together and discuss their faith.  

Over the course of Women’s Weekend, students will worship, eat together and have small group discussions. If a member doesn’t feel comfortable attending in-person, a live-stream will be available for the main sessions. 

Pre-COVID-19, members stayed overnight at the church, but due to safety concerns, this year’s retreat will only be one day and will be on March 20 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m at Riverwood Chapel.  

Staff members of the church decided this year’s retreat theme would be “the Simple Gospel,” which Lauren Woolum, H2O staff member, described as “the core of our faith.” Woolum said they will be talking about who Jesus is, what he has accomplished and how that changes their life.  

“We always come into it asking the question, ‘What are the felt needs of the women in our community right now?’” said Woolum. “This year we felt a desire to get back to the basics.”  

Similar to Women’s Weekend, Manmaker is a one-day retreat for the men of the H2O Church. It will be held the weekend after Women’s Weekend on March 27 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Stony Glen Camp. 

This event will be focused on biblical manhood. It will be held primarily outside, where students will engage in interactive activities such as fire making and sports while simultaneously discussing their faith.  

Students who attend either retreat are encouraged to bring their Bible, a journal and a mask to promote safety guidelines. Anyone who attends the women’s retreat is advised to bring a prepared lunch, as they have no registration fee to cover meal expenses; however the Manmaker’s $25 registration fee will cover all meal expenses for anyone attending that retreat.  

Woolum and other staff members are optimistic about the impact of both Women’s Weekend and Manmaker. 

“I’m hopeful that even in spite of having to wear a mask and keep our distance, it’s still going to be a refreshing time to be together,” said Woolum.

Hannah Mayer covers religion. Contact her at hmayer1@kent.edu

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