Arctic Women's Retreat Offers 'A Healthier You'

May 02, 2017 | Wendi Kannenberg

As part of a community initiative to foster improved health and wellness among the women of southwest Alaska, the local women’s ministry team in Dillingham marked the beginning of 2017 by sponsoring a full-day retreat in January. Coordinated under the direction of Anita Alers, women’s ministry leader, this is the second consecutive year that a special event “A Healthier You” has brought together congregational and community volunteers dedicated to advancing positive physical, emotional and spiritual health throughout Bristol Bay communities. 

Building upon biblical principles of whole-person health, the retreat provided a variety of instructional seminars and activities designed to impact and engage the multiple aspects of mental, physical and spiritual health. Individual seminar presentations included topical focus on fostering healthy relationships, responding to abuse and domestic violence, overcoming substance abuse, dealing with grief and loss, advancing physical health, and developing spiritual maturity.

While enjoying an elegant midday brunch, retreat participants were additionally able to socially connect and support each other. Everyone in attendance received specially crafted “faith boxes” containing church-sponsored information on having a relationship with Christ and additional items of encouragement. 

Attributes afforded to each woman of God were reflected in the retreat’s thematic colors: purple for royalty, wealth and uniqueness plus white for purity. As a final highlight to the day, individualized personal pampering services were provided on site for the women, including complimentary facials and manicures. 

As part of a vibrant, rural Alaskan community, the Dillingham congregation is embracing the biblical commission to share Christ’s love through service with and for others.