Briarwood encompasses 70 acres of heavily wooded land, much of which is unspoiled, virgin growth. It can comfortably serve 160 guests in a wide variety of housing units. The developed areas of the center include two large activity fields, several miles of hiking trails, and 27 buildings.
Through the commitment and vision of many faithful church leaders, Briarwood Retreat Center was purchased from the Presbyterian church in 1995. Many upgrades and improvements were made in the early years.
In 1998, Briarwood became independent of its former agency, Lutheran Outdoor and Retreat Ministries of the Southwest (LORMS), affording more local ownership and control over its programming and facilities use.
The ministry of Briarwood is rapidly growing. Summer camp registrations are up, weekends are booked many months in advance, and the people and congregations of the Northern Texas-Northern Louisiana Mission Area (NT-NL) are committed to seeing Briarwood grow.
The future of Briarwood is centered in the hands of God. During the fall of 2008, visionary leaders of the NT-NL gathered together for a time of Bible study, prayer, and listening – as we listened for where God is calling us as a summer camp and retreat ministry. The board and staff also journeyed through this process of listening. In early 2009, the board adopted the following:
God’s purpose for Briarwood is to be a natural setting where people experience God’s love.
- Jesus is Lord
- Tell the Good News
- Everything Belongs to God
- God Provides Abundantly
- Prayer and Being in the Word is Central
- God’s Justice Will Guide Us
Growing into the Future
Briarwood, in partnership with the NT-NL Mission Area, is committed to growing the leaders of today and tomorrow. The DiscipleLife Alive Initiative is a three year response among the congregations and individuals of the NT-NL to grow leaders for the 21st century. One of the results of the initiative will be the NT-NL Mission Center at Briarwood, a state-of-the-art online and distance training. This center will provide training at Briarwood and throughout the northern Texas and northern Louisiana in order to provide top-quality, cutting edge leadership formation.
The possibilities are endless as we partner with the people of the NT-NL Mission Area (and the many other denominations of the Metroplex area) and follow where our Lord is leading.
DiscipleLife Alive Initiative – a web page on the NT-NL Mission Area web site describing the initiative in detail.
NT-NL Mission Center at Briarwood – a PDF from from the NT-NL Mission Area web site describing and showing the proposed mission center.