You might be wondering what the deal is, what are we up to here?
The TRUTH is, our young men are in a war. And they're losing. Every day, they fall to the forces of pornography and cultural decline. Even those who have a sincere desire to serve the Lord find themselves enslaved to the enemy in their private life, hating themselves and their sin.
It's time to set our young men free to fight. They need to know the power in serving the King, the freedom of living by His code, and the all-consuming passion of fighting for His cause. Men of Valor is a two-day retreat designed to equip guys to become God's ideal of manhood. Through high-intensity activities, we focus their attention on battle strategies, then bring it home with God's Word and practical teaching. It's time to show them how to live a life defined by Valor.
Men of Valor: Illinois is intended for teenage guys (7th grade+). The event includes Airsoft and Gladiator Tournaments (with padded weapons).
There's a couple of things that need to be said, though.
First, the events are pretty physical. The "toys" we're playing with can hurt. Though we place a very high priority on safety and do everything we can, it's still quite possible (even probable) to get a few bruises and scrapes. No one is forced to participate in any given activity, but it is encouraged for team bonding.
Second, the subject matter is deeply personal, spiritual, & of a "mature" nature. This retreat gets very explicit on sex-related issues. The goal is not to scare anyone through discussions of STDs or anything like that, but instead to focus on the positive - on the vital relationship with Christ that is the goal. We're talking about so much more than just saving sex for marriage. We're talking about being pure in every area of our lives, starting with that most dangerous area - the eyes. The lessons are extremely practical. If you have any questions about the content, feel free to ask.
As you can see from that title, we're treating the war for our sons' purity as just that: a war. That's why the entire weekend is built around "battle"-themed events (gladiator duels, capture the flag, etc.). It's not just fun for the guys; it all ties together into the important lesson we're trying to teach.