Sunday, January 21, 2024

Epworth By The Sea

Last weekend, I spent time with two good clergywomen friends (Emily from Florida and Susan from Georgia) at the Southern Lights Conference at the Methodist retreat center (Epworth by the Sea) on St Simon's Island in Georgia. 

We had some really great speakers (writers, musicians and poets). 
This is Ken Medema who creates on the spot music based on listening to people talk. I was speaking at a retreat 20 years ago at Eckerd College and he did that after I preached.

The cohosts of the event were authors Brian McLaren and Diana Butler Bass. 

Cole Arthur Riley also spoke using excerpts from her first book (This Here Flesh) and her upcoming book (Black Liturgies). 

Diana Butler Bass interviewing Simran Jeet Singh, author of The Light We Give 

Instead of staying at the retreat center, we rented a condo half a mile away that we could walk easily back and forth to - this way I could cook my own meals for my allergies. 

Saturday afternoon we got a little time to walk around Epworth by the Sea - it was my first time there 

Prayer Chapel 

My friends insisted that no trip to the island would be complete without eating here - Barbara Jean's  Restaurant. It was wonderful! 

The Pier 

And we made a trip to the Lighthouse. Bonus we got to climb it! 
And double bonus - we ran into my cousin Russ, his wife Karen, their son David and his girlfriend Brooke in the lobby of the lighthouse!!! Russ and Karen live an hour north near Savannah and David and Brooke live in Atlanta - they were there for David to run a marathon. 

Then we visited Fort Frederica. John and Charles Wesley stayed here when they first came to Georgia with James Oglethorpe. 

We stopped at the nearby Christ Episcopal Church which has a Wesley Tree and a labyrinth. 

We caught the remnants of sunset on the water when we got back. 

Things wrapped up on Sunday morning with worship and communion. 

And then it was back to the real world. Such a great time with friends and in such a beautiful space. 

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