I had the incredible privilege of spending the day with the School of Rhetoric students on October 8th at the Triangle Y Ranch Camp and Retreat Center in the foothills of the Catalina Mountains near Oracle. Here’s what I can report:

The theme of the retreat was “American Noise.” Mr. Hardeman spoke passionately about God’s truth vs. what the world is trying to convey through social media, television, and other sources. He got this year’s theme from a Skillet song. We got to watch the music video at the end of the evening. If you’d like to see it, click here: Skillet – American Noise (Official Video)

Our students learned about being morally courageous and then demonstrated true courage by facing their fears on the High Ropes Course. Watching them tackle this challenge was truly inspiring. Hearing their peers encourage them every step of the way was heartwarming and a testament to how much and how well they love one another.

The verse “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2) took on a whole new meaning after listening to our guest speaker, Mr. Shank, and then watching the students learn how to spar. Yes, with boxing gloves.

The women’s panel, which consisted of Mrs. Adler, Mrs. Andersen, Mrs. Kopas, and Mrs. Vavala, (moderated by Mrs. Hardeman) poured into our high school girls by speaking the truth about what the Bible says to help them filter out the noise they are hearing from the world.
There was some great fellowship. I heard lots of laughter, witnessed countless volleyball games, and even learned how to play KanJam.

We closed out our retreat by a campfire. After making s’mores, we were led in worship by Mr. Poling. No one wanted to leave. “One more song!” the students kept requesting. Patient parents who had driven out to take students home got to listen to about 30 extra minutes of praise and worship to the One who made the day so special.

If our SOR students are representative of our future generation, we will be in good hands.
Speaking truth in the midst of the American Noise,

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