Ladies, did you get what you wanted for Christmas? Did any of your presents include a weekend away with other women of faith for a time of refreshing and restoration? If not, your hubby has a chance to redeem himself this Valentine’s Day. Ask him to buy you a weekend trip to the Real Women Retreat in Ohio’s beautiful Amish country.
This getaway is planned for June 1-2, 2018, and the third annual event will be bigger than ever. You can stay in one of two Carlisle Inns, at either the Sugar Creek or Walnut Creek locations, and the retreat will take place in the brand new Ohio Star Theater in Sugar Creek.
Real Women started out in 2016 with about 200 women in attendance, and it expanded to host nearly 250 in 2017. This year, Sandy Lore is stepping out in faith to plan for 500 ladies!
The matriarch of The Lore Family (see thelorefamilyministries.com), Sandy attended several Women of Faith conferences in Columbus, and she also went to one in South Carolina which hosted 20,000 women.
“I heard the Lord whisper to me and say, ‘I love them all.’” — Sandy Lore
“I remember the first time I went to Women of Faith, I started looking around. There were so many different types of women there. Then I heard the Lord whisper to me and say, ‘I love them all,’” she said. “I was blessed that God created every one of them, and they are all different. I felt in my heart that I wanted to minister to them.”
She first began holding smaller women’s conferences through the Christian Baptist denomination at local churches in southern Ohio. Then after her family launched a full-time singing career in southern gospel, they visited the Carlisle Inn in Sugar Creek. “The Lord gave me the vision there to have a retreat,” she said. “I was scared to death, and Darren (her husband) thought I had lost my mind.”
But she knew God was speaking to her, and she and a group of about 15 of her closest friends teamed up to organize the first one in June 2016. “I was amazed how God brought it all together and how beautiful it was,” she said. Each year, her support group helps publicize and works to sign up other ladies to attend. In addition, they have prayer meetings leading up to the event. Then they arrive early on the day of the retreat to help set up the refreshment tables, decorate, prepare food, and register the attendees. “They keep me calm and tell me everything’s going to be ok,” Sandy said.
The second go-around took place in June 2017 with ladies coming from more than 60 different churches, and they barely fit into the room where the retreat was held at the Carlisle Inn in Sugar Creek. “I just knew you could not get more than what we had last year into that room and be comfortable. I felt in my heart that it needed to grow, and it would grow,” Sandy said. “But you can always hear Satan nagging and saying it will fall apart when you have a vision and a leading from God. That’s why it’s called faith.”
What should you expect at this event?
Attendees begin to check in at the hotel on Friday, June 1, at 3 p.m. Yummy snacks and refreshments are available in the lobby to hold you over until dinner. You have a couple hours to unpack and freshen up for the evening’s activities. If you get ready early, you may even have some time to browse the great shops surrounding the hotels.
At 5 p.m., everyone heads for the Dutch Valley Inn for a hot home-cooked style Amish meal. The retreat begins at the theater at 7 p.m. and goes until 9 p.m. Then it’s time to slip into your PJ’s for an all-girl slumber party with board games, corn hole, swimming, popcorn, cookies and more. Or you can head to your room for a good night’s sleep.
On Saturday morning, the hotels provide a continental breakfast along with homemade cinnamon rolls. Then it’s time to check out, take everything to the car and head for the retreat which starts back up again at the theater from 10 a.m. to noon, followed by lunch. You might also win a door prize! Last year, more than $650 worth of items were donated. After lunch, everyone is turned loose to eat and shop to their heart’s delight in Amish Country before returning home for the evening.
What Happens at the Retreat?
We go to church! I get the assignment every year of warming up the crowd by leading them in worship with singing, piano playing and hopefully a few laughs. The retreat is a chance to forget about all your responsibilities at home, focus on God and His blessings, worship the Savior and giggle with other ladies as much as possible. Sandy’s good friend Kelly Sanders also helps to lighten the mood with some comedic skits you won’t want to miss.
The featured singer is Tammy Jones-Robinette who lives in northeast Ohio. She has sung since the age of eight and is a well-known songwriter. She and her husband Jim launched her solo ministry 20 years ago, and to date, 26 of her songs have made the top 80 on the national charts, all songs she has written. Tammy also provides a few chuckles each year, but more importantly, she is an anointed and talented singer who connects with her audience and blesses you with her humble spirit. [Trivia note: For those who know the Parsons Family, Annette Parsons is Tammy’s sister. Find out more about Tammy at www.tammyjonesrobinette.com.)
“I would love to see women truly change through the power of Jesus Christ.” — Sandy Lore
Burnette Brown of Beech Fork Christian Baptist will be on tap again to share another powerful message from Heaven. Sandy has known Burnette her whole life and has sat under her teaching many times. “She’s a very backward person in public, but when she’s teaching, the Lord makes her very bold,” she said. You’ll find this to be true when you hear her speak.
Sandy and her daughter, Fayth, also share some special lessons at the retreat. (Note: Fayth also speaks each year at the annual True Purpose Conference which she hosts for teenage girls in the Tri-state area. More about this event in a future Southern Ohio Christian Voice article.)
What is Sandy’s goal for the 2018 Real Women Retreat?
“I would love to see women truly change through the power of Jesus Christ,” she said. “I want women who are depressed to see there is hope in Jesus Christ, and know He is truly the anchor of our soul (see Hebrews 6:19—the 2018 theme verse for the retreat). I want them to shout, praise the Lord, and feel free to worship!”
More Info and How to Register
King rooms accommodate two guests at $200 per person. Queen rooms are for four women and cost $150 per person. These costs cover your food, lodging, and the retreat. A $100 deposit is required to hold your room, and the full price is due March 31, 2018. No refunds are given if you cancel, but you are permitted to sell your spot to someone else. Please let Sandy know if you do this so as to avoid confusion on the day the conference begins.
Attendees must be at least 13 years of age. For more information, call or text Sandy Lore at (740) 285-5054 or send a Facebook message through the Lore Family’s Facebook page. Online registration is also available for the first time this year through the Lore Family’s website at thelorefamilyministries.com, where you can pay your fees online.