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The Diocese of Ohio is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion represented in the United States by The Episcopal Church.


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Fall Youth Retreat

On a beautiful fall day in October, 25 participants from ten parishes gathered at St. Barnabas in Bay Village for the Fall Youth Retreat. Some first-timers felt a little nervous walking in—they didn’t know many other participants, and didn’t really know what to expect. After about an hour of introductions and team-building problem-solving games, everyone felt a lot better. And the same youth who had been nervous walking in were the very ones who had to be dragged away from their new friends by their parents the next day.

The theme of the retreat was spirituality and photography. Dr. Drew Le from Christ Church, Hudson, led a powerful day of creativity and reflection. The youth used their phones and cameras to capture light, perspective, and each other in new ways. In a session on portraiture, Drew taught that to make your subject feel confident, beautiful, and worthy, you yourself must feel confident, beautiful, and worthy. He reminded us that God is with us in both the beautiful and the challenging, and that because Jesus was vulnerable, we are beautiful. The beauty of vulnerability absolutely showed up in the photography taken by the youth.

One participant said, “[The retreat] gave us a new perspective on everything, especially photography and life. It was so meaningful and empowering.” Another said they had experienced “so many fun memories I will cherish.”

The games, the music, the fun, the friends, the tacos, and the not-much-sleep made for a great weekend. The reminder that we are each beautiful because Jesus became vulnerable, that’s worth framing.

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