Chaplains from nine Uniting Church schools gathered at Cleveland Winery in Lancefield for their annual retreat in August.
The retreat was an opportunity for chaplains to slow down and connect with one another amidst the wind and rain of the Victorian Winter.
Brunswick Uniting Church member Julie Perrin opened the worship service and invited attendees to reflect on their chaplaincy experiences during an evening storytelling session.
The chaplains explored the story of the Transfiguration, reflecting on what it means to be tired and in need of retreat.
They were also invited to ponder on finding beauty in brokenness: “Where have you seen a shining moment amidst shadows and darkness?”
Along with prayer and self-reflection, the chaplains shared resources and planned collaborations.
VicTas moderator Rev Sharon Hollis hosted a Mutual Invitation conversation.
A Mutual Invitation is a group-sharing process designed for settings where there is a diversity of ages, cultural backgrounds and personality types.
Chaplains took the opportunity to share their experiences from the past year.
“The retreat is the highlight of my year,” one chaplain commented.
“It is an opportunity outside of the overly scheduled school day to be nourished by time with God and enriched by the experiences and wisdom of my colleagues.”
Sarah Lockwood is the synod’s School Project Worker.