2023 Celebration of Ministry Retreats

Grow in Grace is excited to invite you to the Celebration of Ministry in 2023!

April 12 – 14, 2023

  • Begun in Grace for pastors & spouses from the WLS graduating classes 2020
  • Renewed in Grace for pastors & spouses from the WLS graduating classes 2013
  • Excelling in Grace for pastors & spouses from the WLS graduating classes 1998
  • Remaining in Grace for pastors & spouses from the WLS graduating classes 1988

Pastors who were originally part of the anniversary classes but who graduated a year or two later because of a year spent elsewhere in school or emergency calls are also welcome to attend with their original class.

“It was absolutely wonderful to be with all the pastors and their wives.  It is so encouraging!”

Registration Information

Registration opens on October 21, 2022.

Early bird registration is only $399 per couple or $199 for single pastors. Early bird registration closes in February 2023. After that date, the price of registration is $449 per couple or $249 for single pastors.

Agendas

We have crafted four unique agendas that we pray will be beneficial to each pastor and his spouse for their specific ministry milestone. It is our hope that if you attend you will:

  • have the opportunity to take advantage of presentations aimed at your specific season in the called ministry (as couples and individually);
  • have the opportunity to consider challenges and opportunities you may face in the future; and,
  • celebrate God’s grace on your ministry and the ministry of your classmates.

View last year’s unique agendas for examples!

Worship

We will be holding two joint worship services: one opening communion service and one closing service. View the worship bulletins from last year here.

Workshops

For those attending the 10, 25, and 35 year retreats, there are multiple workshops from which to choose. The workshops and plenary presentations for each group are geared toward their specific stages in their ministries and lives.

Bible Studies

One of the centerpieces of the retreats are the four session Bible studies. Each retreat has its own Bible study specially selected for that group.

Run the Walk 5K

The 5K Run/Walk is an event for those attending the Celebration of Ministry retreats and takes place on the Friday morning of the retreats. Pastors, wives, and team members are all invited to sign up.

Location Information

Drury Plaza Hotel San Antonio Riverwalk

Retreat attendees are responsible for making and paying for their own lodging arrangements at the historic Drury Plaza Hotel. Hotel reservations should be made directly with the hotel. A reduced group rate code will be available once registration opens.

The reduced rates are also available before and after the retreat should you choose to enjoy beautiful San Antonio on your own time.

Parking

Hotel parking is available at a cost of $26.00 per car, per night for overnight guests only.

Meals

The Riverwalk is home to a variety of restaurants of many tastes. The Drury provides daily breakfast as well as a Kickback event starting at 5:30pm. The Kickback event provides a generous amount of appetizers as well as adult beverages that are included in your room rate. 

Children

On-site Childcare

Grow in Grace has received consistent feedback on what a blessing this retreat has been for husband and wife to attend together alone. Since the retreat remains focused on strengthening pastors and their wives, we strongly encourage making arrangements for childcare for the duration of the retreat. However, we do welcome infants under the age of one year to attend with parents if necessary, as we will be making onsite childcare available for those who can find no other option.

Please indicate on the registration form if you plan to bring your infant with you to the retreat and plan to make use of the free onsite childcare.

Transportation and Travel Costs

Arrival time and transportation to/from airport

In the past we have had attendees miss the opening session and even the entire first day due to weather and flight delays. Please allow yourself enough time for travel and possible delays in order to make the most out of this celebration opportunity. The retreats begin on Wednesday, April 12 at 2pm and conclude on Friday, April 14 at noon.

For those flying into San Antonio, the most economical transportation to the Drury Plaza Hotel San Antonio Riverwalk is to use a taxi/Uber/Lyft. Those who happen to arrive with others attending the retreat and are looking for a taxi to the hotel can often find mini-van size taxis that allow up to six riders for the same cost, thus considerably lowering the per-person cost. It may be even easier to coordinate such joint rides as the retreat ends. Those wishing to include the cost of the taxi/Uber/Lyft in their travel reimbursement request are encouraged to request a receipt.

Estimated cost of ride: approximately $30 each way with some variation depending on traffic.

**Make use of this spreadsheet when it comes to arrival and departure times to/from the airport.**

Please note: There is another Drury on the Riverwalk within two blocks of our hotel. Be sure to tell the taxi driver that you are staying at the Drury Plaza Hotel San Antonio Riverwalk.

Reimbursement

Explanation Sheet

Transportation costs will vary depending on distance from San Antonio. However, in order to equalize travel costs to some degree, the seminary has set up a transportation equalization fund. Transportation costs in excess of $700 per couple ($350 if traveling alone) will be reimbursed by the seminary at 50%.

We have provided an explanation sheet that provides a few more details on how this transportation reimbursement will work. Eligible travel costs include airfare and taxi or car rental reimbursement and parking.

Congregational Support

Grow in Grace sends encouragement to your congregation to mark this anniversary by making it possible for you (and your wife) to attend the retreat. In early June, an email will be sent to you asking for contact information where this encouragement should be sent.

A letter similar to the lay leader letter linked below will be mailed and emailed by the end of June.