Fifty singles from across Europe worshipping our Creator in song and prayer in multiple languages gazing up at thousands of stars for which our Father knows them each by name. It sounds kind of like heaven, and it was. The third week of August saw singles gather from 15 countries across Europe for a weeklong vacation retreat in the Swiss Alps. 

Even the chef and his team went above and beyond to make the singles feel special and served plated meals (no buffets!) including salmon! One night was a BBQ, another a French Antilles dinner, and another a Ukrainian dinner – complete with music, a DJ, decorations, and a cocktail party. Friday night’s “White dinner dance” closed out the week-long festivities.

And while we are all looking forward to next year, we’re not waiting until then to see one another. Already different people have visited one another, we’re connecting over Zoom and WhatsApp, and praying together. 

A big “merci beaucoup” to Richard and Beatrice Raemy who had the vision and the heart to pull the singles together, let us design the program and lead, while they did all the behind-the-scenes work so we could spend a week building a deeper relationship with God and with our brothers and sisters. 

Reflections from Switzerland

I found the retreat very refreshing and relaxing, and plenty of time for God, rest, and community. But most of all time to reflect on my own relationship with God these past few years both before and during COVID, and teaching and company to help with that reflection. – Carin, Sweden

The beautiful nature inspired me to pray to our God. I was touched by the openness and vulnerability of the sessions, I felt the call to do the same in the fellowship. It was also a lot of fun times and good food . – Javier, Spain

The organizing team had set the stage for vulnerability, compassion, and humble serving to us singles in the ways that melted our hearts and we all wanted to contribute to that spirit. We shed both tears and laughter, felt heard, loved, cherished and inspired to grow. – Ilga, Latvia

What was the most impressive was the openness; a real curiosity. Not a group mindset, but a real North-East-South-West cocktail…embracing diversity, a genuine interest, a glimpse of Beyond, and connections that continue to occur which IS rare. Definitely God planned. – Vanessa, Belgium

I loved the classes, specially the vulnerability regarding sharing of mental health. As everyone mental health can be impacted by different lives issues at various stages of life. And some of our churches may not be aware about how to help disciple suffering from mental disease. I’m so grateful to God who inspired the Raemy’s in organizing the retreat. They served us from day one until the end. They have loved us and engaged their hearts while listening to us. – Sanese, England. 

We had the honor to meet a group of 50 inspiring, talented, humble and wholehearted disciples living in Europe. We aspire to continue building God’s family with you in Europe. Our heart is full of gratitude to God for you. We love you! – Richard & Béatrice Raemy, Switzerland