TWO local churches joined together last Saturday to lead members of their congregations on a Led Retreat Day, at the Willie Clarke Centre at Lochore Country Meadows Country Park.

As part of strengthening ecumenical links, Salvation Army Cowdenbeath, in partnership with St. Finnian’s Scottish Episcopal Church, Lochgelly, joined together to offer this free retreat event.

The retreat day was organised and led by Lieutenant Karen Thomas, from Cowdenbeath Salvation Army, and Ross Stirling-Young Lay Worship Leader, from St. Finnian’s.

Said Ross: "To bring the day to a close, retreatants were welcomed back to St. Finnian’s for refreshments before joining together in a Taize-inspired service, allowing time for reflection and to consider the ways in which God worked with us on this special day.

"Members of both congregations were invited to escape daily routines from the hustle and bustle and pressures of daily life. Many of the group who attended had never experienced the calmness and relaxation of being on a retreat.

"The retreatants were led through several activities, under the autumnal theme of 'Changing Seasons'. These activities offered individuals the opportunity to use stillness, prayerfulness and fellowship to ponder and reflect on their own lives as they too change, just as the seasons do.

"The benefits of leading a retreat day at the Willie Clarke Centre were aplenty. From the spectacular panoramic views from the meeting room, to the many different walking routes on offer close by.

"The Centre staff could not have been more helpful and were keen to ensure we all felt welcomed and at home, all of course adding to the ability to unwind and find a safe space in which to truly escape".

Karen and Ross are now busy planning their next led retreat day and reported it will take place in the season of Advent, which will be particularly important for those who wish to escape the 'business' of Christmas and reflect on its true meaning.