BANGOR, Maine — Recovery programs sponsored by local churches have teamed up to offer a Christ-centered retreat from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday at Bangor Baptist Church, 1476 Broadway.
Bill Irwin, the North Carolina native who now lives in Sebec, will speak about his own recovery from alcoholism. Irwin, who is blind and now 70, is best known for hiking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine in 1990 with his guide dog Orient.
Now a motivational speaker, he has addressed dozens of international companies, educational institutions and organizations on topics such as leadership management, recovering from addiction and diversity.
Facilitators from Celebrate Recovery, which meets at Columbia Street Baptist Church in Bangor, Life Recovery from Calvary Baptist Church in Brewer, and Serenity Recovery at Bangor Baptist organized the program.
“When people enter an addiction recovery 12-step program they usually hope that by [stopping use of] the addictive agent, that their life will get better,” Brian Smith of Life Recovery said in an email announcing the retreat. “For the most part that is true, but there is still work to be done in order to refrain picking up the addiction again.”
Christ-centered recovery enables people to couple the 12 steps of recovery and Jesus Christ as their higher power, he said.
“One thing that we are told is that we must find a God of our understanding and that what we really have is a daily reprieve from our addiction based on the maintenance of our spiritual condition,” Smith said. “With those two charges, we embark on a journey to grow closer to our higher power. For many of us, the God of our understanding is the God of the Bible.”
The retreat also will include seminars on grief, forgiveness, anger, emotional healing, prayer and more. Speakers will discuss how their relationship with Christ has affected their lives.
People of all faiths and addictions are welcome, Smith said. Participants may attend some or all of the session.
For information, call 947-6576.