Testimonials

What People Are Saying

Oasis Alumni Couple
Oasis Alumni Couple

Powerful, great insight, sensitive, painful, releasing, enlightening and hopeful are all the words we would use to describe our experience. Your warm, understanding and accepting attitudes helped us let down our guard and engage in the process. Your God-focus insight throughout helped you correctly read where we were at and what we needed. We feel like now that we are aware of what is inside us, we can choose to acknowledge it and continue to work it out. Thank you for helping us to get to this place of awareness, empowerment and hope.

Oasis Alumni
Oasis Alumni

Thank you for creating a safe place to process, to learn, and to heal.

Retreat Attendee
Retreat Attendee
April 2014

Very personable...felt safe to open up and express ourselvesā€¦wonderful to rest, nap, walk, wind down and be refreshed in the afternoons...thoroughly enjoyed accommodation...perfect, private, comfortableā€¦; amazing, delicious food; teaching sessions were wonderfulā€¦we delved into areas that we didnā€™t know how to unlock; perfect balance...great content...skilled leadersā€¦blown away with Brentā€™s presentation...words cannot express...Bob, Penny and Susan are a great combination of people...so obviously friends...wise...compassionate...not afraid to get involved (get hands dirty)...1-5 scale 6 ...gave permission and opened us up to feel: loss, tragedy, sadness, joy, peace in chaos...perfect balance of sessions; Accommodations were perfect, private, comfortable...Excellent balance of sessions/time off...Dr. Johnā€™s topic was brilliantly presented...a sensitive and deeply informed communicator...appreciated interaction...absolute GOLD!; Ronā€™s session was a great reminder; Pennyā€™s session on Burnout brought clarity to my condition and provided hope that I could make it through; Brentā€™s session was a powerful use of words of imagery...Bob, Penny and Susan are a great team!...Sensitive ,supportive and appropriate...wonderful times of worship and tasteful video clips...this retreat came at a crucial and strategic time for us...while distracted and hurting from our recent crises, we have received a very special care package of love, sensitive and wise counsel, spiritual and emotional support and encouragement, and especially renewed hope in returning to normal, productive life...it has been a powerful, intimate, safe, and refreshing 6 days...thanks so much...youā€™re working on an excellent formula, keep it up...Oasis is an amazing, much needed ministry...Blessings on the team for responding to the call to provide it...I experienced safe community, felt loved and ministered to...the schedule was organized very well in that it felt safe by the time we were to tell our stories...accommodations were wonderful, so comfortable and tastefully decorated, felt pampered...quality, variety and verbal description of the food was amazing...really appreciated the openness, relationship and vulnerability of Bob, Penny, and Susan...Very skilled, great big hearts, very real, youā€™re an amazing team; felt poured into, validated, embraced and given good information and strategies to move forward...really appreciated couples counselling.

Pastor & Spouse
Pastor & Spouse
March 2014

Freeing, humbling...I thought I was further along than my spouse, eye opening, understanding, very nice, restful and peaceful, really enjoyed many good conversations in the hot tub, dinner at Bob and Pennyā€™s was great, appreciated the amount of time spent addressing our core issues one on one with Bob, we really needed this focused attention at this time, we definitely addressed core issues...certainly more than I had anticipated, excellent guidance in helping me and us to dig deep and also connect emotions to events, balance of sessions just right, enjoyed blocks of time to talk together over coffee or in hot tub and time to do nothing after dealing with heavy issues, we loved the gift of the movie on one of our evenings, balance was perfect for me...I prefer a loose, casual and flexible schedule with lots of down time, really loved this retreat, words of insight given by Oasis Team were beneficial, really appreciated being prayed over.

Retreat Attendee
Retreat Attendee
February 2014

Accommodation and Meals: Way more than expected!; outstanding; felt pampered; beautiful and comfortable; the location is so much a part of the healingā€¦couldnā€™t pick a better place!ā€¦it was meaningful to have our own space to go away to as neededā€¦own bathroom tooā€¦awesome.

Teaching sessions: great info and presentation style, very informative, excellent content, engaging and energetic, charts/diagrams helpful to visualize the process, created a great environment for conversation, cleared up so much for me, a real eye opener, very easy to follow and relate content to my life, very relevant, the visualization was excellent.

Facilitators: very friendly and welcomingā€¦made the environment always a safe one; Wow, they are not only great, but they have inspired me to be a kinder more dedicated guest service person in my own settingā€¦they are incredible!; easy to talk toā€¦good to hear they are human too, and enjoyed hearing how they worked through thingsā€¦appreciated their genuine care and kindness; Penny and Bob are great working with participantsā€¦you have wonderful gifts for thisā€¦Susan is a breath of fresh airā€¦I love how you were all available to usā€¦thank you for loving me in my dark placesā€¦your reflections after everyone shared their stories were powerful; great hostsā€¦the two of you are a great teamā€¦kind and prophetic!...look forward to staying in touch! Thank you!; genuinely accepted and lovedā€¦it has to be a strain on each of you to be engaged for so many days in a row and it isnā€™t unnoticedā€¦thank you.

Effect that this RETREAT has had on you and your spouse (if married): Has helped us to see the areas that we are suffering or struggling inā€¦has given us hope and encouragement for whatā€™s to come; it has brought us as a couple close again and it has given me a better outlook on life; I donā€™t think I can ever go backā€¦I finally had my wife with me, thatā€™s a first!!!; it has been good to hear things together and be able to talk things through as a couple; Iā€™m excited by your ministry and believe it has the potential to do deeper and greater ministry in the healing and forming of leadersā€¦I have experienced wonderful affirmation personally and for my ministry; allowed break-through for us to stand together and remove the barriers between us and face out battles together; powerfully helpfulā€¦great insights and some new directionā€¦the personal counseling may have been the highlight for us; for one of the first times we have finally felt heard and understoodā€¦we are thankful for a strong marriage right now so it was refreshing to come together and be loved and supported together during a time of need; much needed turning point in a rather dark, hopeless time.

Retreat Attendee
Retreat Attendee
November 2013

Great accommodation and amazing meals; excellent at revealing things about what I was going through; loved how John would pray as led by the Holy Spirit; excellent counselingā€¦tools for anger and grieving; excellent information and relatableā€¦process of forgiveness was very helpful; really liked the meditative exerciseā€¦great balance between cause, effect, and recovery; thanks for speaking honestly from your heartā€¦it is incredibly helpful to hear what burnout is, your honesty about how it has affected you, and your honest journey of working through it; very practicalā€¦thank you!; very creative and powerful; very insightfulā€¦found some rest and peace within my spiritā€¦the journey allowed room to breathe in chaos; insightful and propheticā€¦some of verses spoken to me will stick and helpā€¦most powerful: God is giving me treasures that can only be mined in darknessā€; thanks for being real, for calling the tough calls and for holding me in honour yet with grace; very sincere; I am so thankful I cameā€¦God has met me here and worked powerfully in me; thank you to all for the welcoming and caring spaceā€¦appreciated Bobā€™s wisdom and strengthā€¦Pennyā€™s understanding and experience with loveā€¦and Susanā€™s, compassion and tenderness; we experienced peace and restā€¦I may not see the ā€˜lightā€™ at the end of the tunnel, but now there is a ā€˜lightā€™ in the tunnel; I came in feeling like I was not coping well to this retreat but am leaving with something newā€¦hope; Iā€™m still processing information for myselfā€¦feeling more at peace than I have in monthsā€¦renewed hopeā€¦observed some transformations already in my spouse; had a wonderful experienceā€¦donā€™t wonā€™t to go.

Retreat Attendies
Retreat Attendies
June 2013

Feedback from participants:

Beautiful facility, genuine and caring hosts, amazing meals; appreciated the interaction, transparency, real examples of the presenters, loved the heart and spiritual content of the presentersā€¦how they would just stop and prayā€¦appreciated the opportunities to ask questions and dialogue, very practical and very helpful.

ā€œPlease donā€™t stop doing what you are doingā€¦there are hundreds of us who need thisā€¦I have been to a lot of conferences which were informational and inspirational, but this retreat was informational, inspirational, and transformational.ā€

Facilitators: Bob/Penny/Susan Comments:

You guys opened your heart and life to usā€¦thank you so much for that gift!...I really appreciated your generosity, genuineness, thoughtfulness, and the way you guys ā€œeasedā€ us into a deeper level of openness and transparency, which I feel to me happened faster than I thought it would, and yet not forced or over uncomfortable; a very accepting, affirming, environment was createdā€¦very, very good to hear your story at the front endā€¦this opened the door for everyone elseā€¦awesome support and wisdomā€¦thank you!; Bob and Penny really set the foundation when they shared their story, Thank you!...You made us feel so comfortableā€¦the atmosphere you all created made us feel that we were heard and we were among friendsā€¦Susanā€™s love for the Lord and her understanding, nonjudgmental way was so welcomingā€¦.I felt as if weā€™d know you all for a long time!; Great listenersā€¦Great servants of God with Big Hearts filled with love and compassionā€¦they truly understand the life of pastorsā€¦they truly model the heart of Jesus; lovelyā€¦thank you so much for your ministry and being faithful servants.

Describe the effect that this RETREAT has had on you and your mate (if married):

I came burdened with a mess of feelingsā€¦trying to make sense of what happened and afraid to trustā€¦I had been badly hurt by community and here in this place God used community who understood , heard even my unspoken words, loved me, affirmed and prayed for me, and extended healing and hope for future trust; the retreat was a time to tell our story, to be affirmed, to be renewed, and help with changes that need to be made going forward regarding self-care and setting healthy boundaries; it has given us some ideas as to how we can be more intentional with self-care; lots of awesome informationā€¦ sharing our story was hard but important and the prayer support was amazing!...definitely helped us with how to approach the next part of our journey.

Workshop Attendee
Workshop Attendee
September 2014

Knowledgeable, professional speakers, informal; relaxed setting, the questions asked by leaders during the interactive stage were excellent, encouraging, validating, safe; balance of conceptual, experiential and safety; the teaching on ā€œsustainable resilienceā€ and practicality on information on burnout; very helpful to our situation, interaction between presenters and us; allowing people to share their deep pains in a safe environment; great variety of presentations, topics really relevant; it was (all) great; affirming; great input, interaction and discussion, responding to what people shared, presenters were great-knowledgeable as well as humble and caring, thank you; safe, caring environment, qualified speakers, liked the stuff of not owning other peoples stuff.

Workshop Attendee
Workshop Attendee
September 2014

Excellent; thanks so much I feel encouraged and supported; thank you for coming to our city...it was great to have it here; really appreciated and applicable; good day.

Ministry Director
Ministry Director
April 2014

Place to truly quiet my spirit and rest...core issues were addressed...I was able to come to a place of release through forgiveness...I am taking responsibility for myself, body, mind, emotions and spirit...the balance of sessions and time off allowed me to reflect, meditate, feel, and even rest, which, Iā€™m learning, is okay to do...this is what I truly needed...Thank you Bob for who you are! May you continue to be used by God with the gift you have been given to reach the hurting...You are a blessing...Lord continue to use this ministry and bless it.

Workshop Attendee
Workshop Attendee
September 2014

Really enjoyed the variety of speakers and the relevance of each topic, adaptable/flexible, practical examples of how to do ministry/not theory, obvious expertise offering opinions and knowledge; the role play helped visualize the point being made; enjoyed the entire experience...it was very good...helpful, affirming, practical and timely.

Pastor and Spouse
Pastor and Spouse
April 2014

Amazing location, very warm and inviting, meals were outstanding, amazing, and abundant, hosts were very caring and encouraging, all our core issues were addressed, worked through some tough things and got pushed in areas needed, I realize where I need to be more direct in some conversations that still need to happen, good balance, any more time working would have been too taxing for me, the time away, the setting, all created a safe environment for being vulnerable, I wouldnā€™t change anything, I feel this is a wonderful ministry which is very much needed, having the partnership with Twin Creeks is a perfect blend, Bob was great facilitator, very caring and wise, it is very evident that he has a passion for this ministry, he was very helpful in helping us deal and realize our issues and feelings attached to them, there was a good balance of him sharing about his own experience that opened me up, he pushed me to deal with areas I hadnā€™t, but in a gentle way by explaining the benefits of doing the work and the costs of not.

Workshop Attendee
Workshop Attendee
September 2014

Thanks so much for slowing things down for us and for your dedication to pastoral leaders and their health!; Will be ā€œchewingā€ on this for a long time; well done...you are teaching on the hot spot areas in the hearts of those who minister today...I like the space and affirmation for questions and wise answers; good job...great to have you in our city and our church.

Missionary Couple
Missionary Couple
May 2014

Loved the hot tub, very quiet and restful, beautiful surroundings and scenery, nice variety of meals, yes, core issues were addressed...even issues we didnā€™t know were there...thank you.
Thank you Bob and Penny for doing the ministry you do...will definitely recommend it to others...so helpful for us...we know God wanted us here...Thank you for sharing some of your personal experiences, it was helpful to hear...thank you for going the extra mile in loaning us your car and computer.

Pastor & Spouse
Pastor & Spouse
May 2014

Accommodation was beautiful...extravagant...very comfortable...provisions and supplies very good...hot tub was very enjoyable, great meals with great with great conversation...especially appreciated the hard work providing excellent options that worked with our dietary restrictions, yes...core issues were addressed...very much so...Bob did a great job of pressing in to make sure we got to the issues we needed/wanted to address...the process we walked through helped to get the conversation flowing again so we can continue to process ourselves...Yes, I really feel the big barriers to healing and relationship were addressed and the tools used to help process were very appropriately and effectively used...good council helped reveal blocks and give meaning to issues we felt but couldnā€™t articulate, good breaks for mental space...good balance and use of homework to keep us moving in our breaks, this time has helped us to begin to get back to a better communication pattern...to be able to share in a healthy way even in the mist of our hurts...I have hope that weā€™ll be okay again...I really appreciated Bobā€™s vulnerability in sharing his experience...it was so valuable to be working with someone who could understand what we were feeling...Bob was very helpful, very sensitive, and very easy to talk with.

Pastor & Spouse
Pastor & Spouse
June 2014

I couldnā€™t have asked for more from the sessionsā€”thank you so much. You didnā€™t waste time, were on time, and ended when you said you would. Great insight, sensitivity, and speaking into our lives was really beautiful. One on one with Bob was just what I needed. I think each day you correctly read where we were at and what we needed. If youā€™ve only done these intensives twice you are fast learners. Thanks for the good God-focus throughout.
I felt like I had my core issues addressed. I felt a bit guilty...like I high-jacked the sessions a bit because I was unaware of what was in there that I needed to come to the surface. This gave me a good starting place for further future work. I felt that the insight and questionsā€”the direction we went with topics was very surprising/discerning. I didnā€™t expect my week to go like it did. Taking some time with family of origin issues was both really painful but very freeing and affirming too. I felt that your (Bob and Pennyā€™s) warm, understanding and accepting attitudes was very helpful for me to let down my guard and engage in the process. Overall, the process of participating in the Oasis Intensive was very good. Powerful, painful, releasing, enlightening and hopeful are all the words I would use to describe this experience. I have the hope that I can work toward healing and growing. I feel like now that I am aware of what is inside me, I can choose to acknowledge it and continue to work it out. Thank you for helping me to get to this place of awareness, empowerment and hope. Thanks also to all who prayed for us and that God is so good in His mercy and grace.

Pastor & Spouse
Pastor & Spouse
August 2013

Excellent, great hospitality, restful, quality, set us at ease, loved the accommodations, we felt pampered and loved, the hosts were amazing, the grounds were a very peaceful setting where reflection could easily take place, meals were incredible. Core issues were definitely addressed...surprised us in some ways...but you have a great gift of getting to the heart of the matter. Thanks for the deep tissue massage of the heart! So good to have the morning full of discussion and digging deep. Great to have the afternoon to process and spend time as a couple to discuss together. And loved the fun in the evenings...so thankful. We thank God for you (Bob and Penny). You were a great gift to us and an amazing resource (and good people to boot!). You complement each other well and your love for healthy leaders shines through.

Pastor & Spouse
Pastor & Spouse
August 2013

Fabulous location and facility, views are spectacular, different rooms are picturesque and comfortable, beds and bedding are excellent, privacy is very good and there is spiritual peace, meals were unbelievable, yummy, definitely felt pampered, lunches and welcome baskets were a very nice personal touch, Pat and Peggy were wonderful hosts, Bob and Penny were professional, very engaging, discerning, warm, compassionate and passionate about bringing help to the relationship. You can tell there is more going on around you than just the encounter, so hospitable, what a great gift, core issues were absolutely addressed, I feel that for the first time we have received the help on the issues that affect both of us...That help came in the form of getting both of us to see some root problems as well as providing us with very practical tools to move forward. I feel like we are finally out of the ditch...no longer stuck. The car needs to be cleaned and the drive needs to continue, but I think we can stay out of the ditch...we can now move forward...I have hope! YAY! There is no question that God has gifted Bob and Penny for this ministry. They are uniquely gifted and the combination of their education and experience make them idea for this ministry...I finally feel like I received the help that I needed personally as well as the help I needed with my wife. Bob and Penny possess a good mix of skills and gifts, got the job done...the rest is up to us and I have hope, which is awesome. I love that you are Spirit led in your sessions and very intuitive, perceptive.

Missionary Couple
Missionary Couple
January 2012

Hosts (Pat and Peggy) were sensitive to where we were at, did not intrude but were graciously available, our accommodations were faultless, beautiful...could not have been better, suite was large, comfortable, clean, full of amenities and most of all, restful, the grounds were a great place to experience the outdoors, meals were delicious, well prepared, fresh, abundant, felt like they were especially for us, bent over backwards to accommodate and spoils us with food, WOW! We experienced a balance of tenderness and firmness with Bob and Penny. They were able to lead, guide and push wherever necessary. They used a combination of love, identification and wise insight to bring God into our lives to help understand what I am going through. I have more hope now than before I came here. I did not feel like any program was forced upon me. Bob and Penny skilfully helped me find the direction I needed to go in and walked through the issues with me. They were willing to listen, and did not have the answers before I asked the question. Yes, we got to what I thought were core issues. It was very valuable to be able to work through some of our arguments in front of you, and to receive your insights into our habitual ways of (non) communicating, and to hear some ideas of better ways to relate. That was so practical and helpful. Having you give feedback to me about how I come across was not easy to hear but was sure necessary and good to know. You were a pretty good mirror for me to be able to see more honestly where I was at. Your ways with us were pretty direct and gracious. I really valued the spontaneous prayer times when difficult areas were touched. And I appreciated how you wouldnā€™t settle for surface answers but pressured us and challenged us with truth. The generous use of your car was a real gift, as were the tip about cheap move night and the excursion to the monastery. Thank you, Bob and Penny! At the start I thought one session per day would hardly be enough. Then, after the first session I changed my mind. It took the rest of the day to try to process what those 2 Ā½ hrs. brought up. At first, I also thought it was too much free time, but pretty quickly began to experience the value of down time, maps, walks in this beautiful nature, and conversations with my husband that arose during restful breaks. Before coming here I had no idea what to expect. I did not even know what I wanted to happen or what I needed. What I did know, was that I didnā€™t want someone to try and ā€œfix meā€ into the image they wanted. I knew I was broken. I didnā€™t want pity or anyone to tell me what to do. What I did want was someone to help me discover what was wrong, point me to God to find a solution(s) according to Godā€™s mind. I know I can hear from God and know He wants to speak to me. Right now I just need some help. I donā€™t want someone else to be responsible for the success of failure of how I respond. If their suggestions donā€™t work perfectly it is important that I am not able to blame them. But if I just get help and discover Godā€™s plan myself, I can take total ownership of it. I believe this is what happened during the past 5 days. Thanks Bob and Penny...I honestly canā€™t think of what we would desire differently. Iā€™m so grateful for Godā€™s perfect timing of this, for the individualized week, for the understanding that God has given through you two, Bob and Penny. My hopes were actually realized through this week. Ohā€”and the first 2 days at Cedar Springs was a perfect place to rest up, and be before coming here. God has truly overwhelmed me with His care during this whole time. Bob and Penny, thank you so very much for following Jesus and His call upon your lives to minister to people like us. What you had to offer us was exactly what we needed. God has used you in incredibly significant ways in our lives. You are now part of His redemption story in our own story. We are grateful.

Ministry Director & Spouse
Ministry Director & Spouse

Powerful, great insight, sensitive, painful, releasing, enlightening and hopeful are all the words we would use to describe our experience. Your warm, understanding and accepting attitudes helped us let down our guard and engage in the process. Your God-focus insight throughout helped you correctly read where we were at and what we needed. We feel like now that we are aware of what is inside us, we can choose to acknowledge it and continue to work it out. Thank you for helping us to get to this place of awareness, empowerment and hope.

HC Workshop Attendee
HC Workshop Attendee
September 2014

Did you find this Workshop relevant and/or helpful to you and your ministry situation?

Excellent sharing and teaching, very encouraging...confirmed that we really are okay and doing good, showed us the areas that affect us and the importance of staying on top of it, just being with those I do ministry with was joyful to me, that material was great, I realized that there are people out there who understand what I go through, very helpful, rarely get to sit together with my spouse and listen to this kind of teaching, very practical, as you said our marriage and families need our best...not our worst, comforting to know we are not alone in these issues...that we can overcome them...thank you for the tools that we can apply...reminders to pray for each other and to take time for each other, most people rely on their home life to recharge their batteries...not realizing that their lack of effort at home results in poor performance at work...need to refocus and put more effort in at home.

What did you like most about the workshop?

The authentic stories, the exercises and the story of our ministry, practical information, speakers authentic, appreciated what both Bob and Penny had to share with us, the related styles stuff, the visual exercise with the blocks...it really brings everything into perspective, asking the right question about our relationship to each other, changing it up with couple exercises..men/women exercises and group, relational styles how we interact as a couple and the tools for building positivity were great, came from a place of being ā€˜realā€™...not having it altogether and going to the harder topics or places in our marriage rather than ignoring them...emphasized the priority that marriage should take in our lives, building positivity...5:1 Ratio, vocabulary of personalities, ā€œStrengthening Ministry Marriagesā€, mapping is a way to see issues in a more objective way.

Other comments: Thank you for all that you do...Itā€™s awesome to see how much you love and care for pastors...I really love that we are able to do this now so young in our ministry...I wish my parents could have gone through this when I was younger, great job...thank you for pouring into us...blessings, thank you and God bless you and your marriage as well, thank you and thank you church leadership for investing in this. The workshop was top notch! Great job Bob and Penny. The whole day went extremely well!

Workshop Attendee
Workshop Attendee
September 2014

It validated how we feel about ourselves and the brokenness in our church and how we think God wants to fix it in a different model...build something new; great info on burnout and great to be able to hear what people are dealing with and how to work through it; I thought it was very relevant; embracing, helpful concepts, open talk dialogue led to good application; it confirmed for me many things that are going well in my life right now; it helped me process unnecessary expectations in life and ministry; I would say as a church we are on the edge of burnout; very helpful, great presentation, interaction, resources and material all relevant; relevant for my current situation; brought clarity to ā€˜tirednessā€™ and understanding myself better. Also provided tools for deeper exploration; entering into a new phase of ministry that will be more demanding. Good tools to mitigating potential problems (Preventative); very insightful and gave me tools for a healthy self and ministry; I found myself making many connections to our ministry team; spoke to heart issues where ā€œl liveā€; first session this morning was great, Round table discussion was a good idea; a great, ā€œsafeā€ place to learn, grow, share and healā€; helped to make sense of the place we are in as we continue to recover from ministry burnout and clinical depression. Put some of our feelings and experiences into perspective. Thank you; the discussion and topics related to my ministry experience. I feel more at rest with being authentic with my ministry team and those I lead in the congregation.

Workshop Attendee
Workshop Attendee
September 2014

Thank you for your heart and care for pastoral leaders; thanks again for authentically ā€œpouring inā€ and for the great encouragement for the journey; This was a great and painful day...thank you!; Thanks ā€“ it was a very encouraging, refreshing workshop; fantastic; excellent; Thank you so much...this is so needed; Thanks for this ministry...itā€™s so badly needed...where else can you go to talk about these things?; Great stuff!; Thank you again for a wonderful and very applicable Health-Check Workshop; I know other pastors who could have benefited from this experience; will you bring this workshop to our community? I will let other others know about this ministry; Thank you for this very important ministry. Our time with you was very beneficial.