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Friday, March 03, 2017

Facing HIV: A Women-only Retreat April 3rd

Written by  Bill Redmond-Palmer

A women’s-only retreat for women living with HIV? It’s happening April 3rd through 6th. Since 1988, Quality of Life Retreats (QLR) have offered a holistic, participant-centered approach to supporting people living with HIV. The four-day retreats offer participants important wisdom for living and coping with their illness and related challenges, as well as opportunities to connect socially and emotionally with others in similar situations. This retreat addresses the unique needs of women living with HIV/AIDS.

Themes include managing health, disease symptoms and medications, as well as alternative therapies and emerging discoveries and treatments. There are optional worship and spiritual activities.

In plenary and small-group settings, retreat participants choose to talk about living with HIV while caring for friends and families and struggling with finances, relationships, aging minds and bodies, sexuality, self-exposure and other conflicts and crises.

Yoga and meditation, massage therapy, arts and crafts, music, games, recreation are all on tap.  In the process, participants learn to challenge habits and addictions and wrestle with difficult emotions like guilt, anger, grief, shame, fear, isolation and loss of self-esteem.  As a result, many gain a sense of fellowship and camaraderie, safety, confidence, hope and joy for living.

All QLR events are ecumenical and interfaith. Created by members of the Baltimore-Washington Conference of the United Methodist Church, QLR has developed a viable model of how the religious community can respond compassionately and effectively to the HIV/AIDS crisis in partnership with community volunteers and helping agencies. Over 29 years, QLR has hosted about 100 serving more than 3,600 people with HIV and AIDS.

This retreat will be held at the Washington Retreat House in Washington, D.C. Round trip bus transportation is provided from Baltimore. The cost is a non-refundable fee of $20, payable by money order only. Applications and money orders must be in the mail by March 21st. Applications are available online at Bwcumc.org/ministries/quality-of-life-retreats. For more info email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or call the retreat registrar at 443-440-2312.

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