Sisters and brothers in Christ,
We are in the season of Lent, a time of spiritual renewal and asking questions; a time of letting go and of turning towards God. It is in this time that I find myself in the process of changing appointments, of saying goodbye to you here at Madras UMC and beginning a very different kind of work as the site director for Alton L. Collins Retreat Center in Eagle Creek, Oregon (close to Sandy).
This is a critical time for us. As some of you know, there have been some health problems my in-laws have been facing and so we have desired to move closer to them for the past year. This new position will place us within an hour’s drive of them, which will help immensely.
This new position is also an opportunity for my wife, Karen, and myself to dive deeper into the world of camp and retreat ministries. We met working at a camp and have talked about working in this kind of Christian ministry for our whole marriage. As a site director, I will not be leading any congregation, instead my work will be managing and leading the Alton L. Collins Retreat Center on behalf of the Oregon-Idaho Camp and Retreat Ministries and in partnership with the Episcopal Diocese of Oregon.
I am very thankful to have had the opportunity to serve you and to serve with you in our community. I look forward to these remain weeks and seeing what work we can accomplish in this time as we faithfully live out God’s call to “Grow in love through relationship with God, with each other, and with our neighbors.”
Let us live out this Lenten journey together, listening for God’s call and accepting the courage the Spirit gives us take our own part in the resurrection story of faith.
Peace of the resurrected Christ be with you all,
Pastor Dan Benson