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Maryland Men of Faith Retreat Highlights Responsibility

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The annual retreat was held on Oct. 1 at Mt. Aetna Retreat Center.

Maryland Men of Faith hosted its annual one-day retreat on Oct. 1, bringing together approximately 120 men for a day of fellowship and inspiration at the Mt. Aetna Retreat Center in Hagerstown, Md.

Maryland Men of Faith is a lay-run organization founded by men who aim to promote positive male relationships and encourage men to be better husbands, fathers, sons and leaders in their local churches. Chesapeake Conference supports Maryland Men of Faith programs, and Eli Rojas, Chesapeake Conference men’s ministries director, serves on the leadership board. 

For the past few years, retreat organizers have taken phrases of an Ellen White quote from p. 57 of her book, “Education,” as inspiration for the annual themes. This year’s theme was “True to Duty,” and Dee Casper, director of CORE Evangelism for Pennsylvania Conference, served as the keynote speaker. Casper challenged attendees to seek greater resolve in their spiritual lives. 

In addition to two general sessions, attendees chose from among five breakout seminars on topics such as leadership, relationships and prophecy. Seminar speakers for the event were Rojas, Jim Howard, Lael Caesar, Matthew Piersanti and Akeem James.

According to John Rengifo, Maryland Men of Faith board chair and lead pastor of the Ellicott City (Md.) church, the event’s atmosphere was full of positive energy and camaraderie. 

“One of the things I loved to hear was the singing,” Rengifo says. “It’s just all male voices, and no one cares what it sounds like. Everyone just belts it out.”

Rengifo says he hopes the men left this year’s retreat more encouraged and committed in their personal walk with Jesus and better equipped to navigate life’s challenges. He says he prays attendees will use their influence to serve as intentional and courageous witnesses for Christ.

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