Sunday, February 10, 2008

Hug Fest 2008

Today, I attended an all-day retreat out in the country (anything outside of the city limits is considered "country" here). With me were all of the ministry directors and the pastors. We enjoyed some excellent fellowship and a time of worship and prayer. The new organization system for the ministries was presented as well. There were also several lessons for reflection. One of these lessons was about hugs.

Did you know that there are several benefits to a hug?
  • Makes a person feel good
  • Takes away loneliness
  • Opens doors to friendship
  • Helps build self-esteem

  • Helps reduce tension

  • Helps with insomnia

  • Keeps a person young

After having a tense discussion on "the hug", which included demonstrations on how to hug properly, the group put it to practice. And so began "Hug Fest 2008". The goal was simple- give everyone in the room a hug. This hugging lasted for 25 minutes as people sought out those they had yet to hug.

As somone from a culture where hugging is not exactly the norm for people who don't know each other very well, this was a culture shock. The Venezuelans loved this. They are very much a hugging culture. And, as I observed (and participated) in this hugging, I noticed that the benefits of the hugging were evident by everyone.

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