The While We’re Waiting Weekends for Parents Touched by Suicide are a recent addition to the retreats we offer. We recognize that the loss of a child to suicide is unique and that there is great value in hosting retreats that specifically address this situation. This will be a very special opportunity to spend some unhurried, relaxed time with other singles and couples who have experienced the loss of a child to suicide. We have found that there is no greater comfort than the fellowship of other Christian parents who truly understand the struggles that naturally accompany this type of loss. Our retreats offer that opportunity, and also provide a safe place to work through some of the questions and struggles we experience as grieving moms and dads who have lost children to suicide … all the while focusing on the hope we have of seeing our children again one day. There is so much encouragement to be found in spending time with other parents who truly understand our grief, but who also share the hope we have in Jesus.
Come, knowing you will be surrounded by people who care, who understand, and who will pray for you. This will be a safe place, a place where we can honestly discuss our struggles, knowing we will not be judged, because every one of us has been there at one time or another. We will also share our victories, and rejoice with each other as we move along the road toward healing.
Our North Carolina retreats are specifically for parents who have been touched by suicide. These events are held at the Oceans 18 Beach House in Kill Devil Hills. This is a beautiful home with plenty of bedrooms with private baths for our guests, a comfortable meeting area with stunning views of the coast, and an expansive sandy beach for walking and shell collecting. This event is open to both single parents and married couples. Lodging for Friday and Saturday nights and all meals are provided and there is no cost to attend.
Elizabeth and Hal are waiting to be reunited with their son John who died by suicide in May of 2020 at age 27. They have an adult daughter, Emily, and a son-in-law, Joe. Hal was in the US Submarine Force for 28 years and they moved frequently during that time. Both have been active in Bible Study Fellowship for decades and serve in their church in Norfolk, Virginia. They desire to encourage and offer hope to others who are suffering a sudden and unwelcome amputation to their family.
Bob and Susan Wathen's 18-year-old daughter Hannah died by suicide in May of 2015. The Wathens are blessed with two other daughters and four grandchildren. They have been involved in various ministries throughout the years, including several mission trips to Guatemala, college student ministry, and leading a While We're Waiting Support Group in their hometown of Hannibal, Missouri. They are anchored in hope and grieving with faith and have a passion to minister to other hurting moms and dads.
This retreat is full, but you may complete the registration form to be added to our waiting list.