By Clint and Carol Smith

The 2017 annual retreat for the Arizona Volunteer Missions was held Feb. 6-7 at First Pima Baptist Church, Sacaton. Each year a different location for the retreat is selected and this was the year God directed us to First Pima.

The facilities at the church were fresh and new with a newly remodeled sanctuary, new fellowship hall, and nearly completed major addition to the pastor’s house. Pastor Eric Gibbs and his wife, Brittany, were instrumental in providing the excellent facility for our use.

On Monday evening, a choral concert was provided by the choir from First Baptist Church, Chandler, with Kevin Fryrear, director. The concert was amazing and the missionaries were surrounded in love. Bret Burnett, senior pastor at Mountain View Baptist Church, Tucson, brought a very timely and encouraging devotional message.

It was evident from the beginning that the Holy Spirit was working in our midst. Most of the missionaries had attended the retreat in previous years, and many comments were voiced that this one was special.

The missionaries came from all over the state, from Mohave Valley, Yuma, Snowflake, Phoenix, Florence, Globe, Hickiwan, Paulden and Tucson. They related experiences where the hand of God was evident in their ministry.

The purpose of the annual retreat is to encourage and refresh each of the Arizona volunteer missionaries. That goal was achieved at Sacaton.