2015 Italy Retreat | Race Cars & Pit Crews

Posted on: October 17, 2015 Written by
2015 Italy Retreat | Race Cars & Pit Crews
    Photography by: Tammy Hiveley      

Rimini, Italy: a sleepy (especially in October!) coastal town on the Adriatic Sea known for its sandy beaches a couple architectural relics from the year 286 B.C.

About 30 minutes away you’ll find the site of the San Marino Grand Prix, a Formula One championship race. In San Marino, they race cars—mostly Ferraris, Lamborghinis, and Maseratis.

Even if you don’t know much about race cars, you can probably conclude you don’t want to crash a Ferrari, a Lamborghini, or a Maserati. They’re too valuable to lose. If you own one, you’ve made a huge investment. Merely putting them on the track is risky, but someone has determined it’s a worthwhile risk.

Every driver depends on a pit crew. Crews work as a team. Each team member must know his or her individual role, ignore their own needs, and focus—together—on doing everything possible to optimize the little time they have to get that car back out on track. They rely on anticipation, adrenaline, and the skills and tools they have at hand.

On our course, “race cars” and “pit crews” are metaphors for global women and our team of volunteers who are preparing to serve them next week. Today we spent time making sure our pit crew gets acquainted. We’re anticipating the needs of our guests and uniting for the task ahead. We look forward to responding to the needs that will come our way.

We don’t have long—only four days—with our guests. We can’t fix deep or long term issues, but we can use the diagnostic tools and skills at our disposal to encourage them on the track.

This retreat’s pit crew includes 32 women from the USA and Canada, most of whom have raised support to come alongside the 75 cross-cultural women who will join us from Monday through Thursday. We expect some of these global women to need only a brief stop and a quick fueling, while others need a new set of tires or some engine work. We can’t solve every problem in a four-day pit stop, but it’s our hope that they’ll leave refreshed, renewed, and with a new resolve to finish their race and finish it well.

So much more than a Ferrari, these global women are too valuable to lose.

Today, volunteers…
1) Spent time getting acquainted and bonding as a team
2) Spent time praying for various aspects of the retreat
3) Assembled gifts for our guests
4) Prepared for times of worship
5) Counted down until our guests arrive: 2 days!

©2015 Thrive



About the author

Bethany joined the Thrive staff in January 2015. Thrive's mission has resonated with Bethany for many years, first as a magazine contributor, then as a donor, and now as the development associate. A natural storyteller, she is passionate about sharing Thrive's stories. Bethany spent more than four years working cross-culturally in the Middle East. She has an undergraduate degree in Social Work from Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri, and a Master's degree in Philanthropy and Development from St. Mary's University of Minnesota in Winona.

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  • Kathy Clark

    Thanks Bethany. Another GREAT article and perspective!!