Larry and Joanne Fortner are a retired couple in their 80’s from Newark, Delaware. Neither grew up being part of the Pecometh family, and in fact, never even knew it existed. They both attended The Walk to Emmaus weekends at the retreat houses, and during their separate weekends watched the Riverview Retreat Center (RRC) being built.
A friend of theirs, John Jackson, later explained that the RRC was an adult retreat center and needed hosts. John suggested that Larry and Joanne would be perfect because they were retired and could host weekday groups. Their Pecometh journey began.
Larry and Joanne have been hosting for 10 years. They were apprehensive at first, but then grew to understand the part they play in the guest experience. They are happy and thankful that they are able bodied and able to host. Guests say that Larry and Joanne make their stay special. They are attentive and thoughtful, and always go that extra step. Larry has the gift of hospitality and has never met a guest in which he could not share a story. Joanne also has the gift of hospitality, but in a quiet way… with a smile and a wink. Hosting is a way to share some wonderful meals, meet new people, and contribute to the Pecometh ministry.
Larry and Joanne now consider Pecometh their second home and the staff their extended family. They send birthday cards, sympathy cards, and are ready with a hug if needed. They enjoy their time at Pecometh and find a calmness overtakes them as they arrive on Holy Ground. God is here. Larry and Joanne are here, doing what they love, and what they didn’t realize was missing from their lives.
We are grateful for Larry and Joanne, and all of our wonderful hosts at Pecometh Ministry. Each uses their gifts to help strengthen the ministry and the experiences of those who visit.