By Jim Richman
When I first heard about Pastors in the Outdoors, I was immediately thankful. Serving as a pastor myself, I’ve learned that one of the most valuable blessings we’ve been given is rest. It was fantastic to know that someone was looking out for the spiritual health of pastors, particularly those who love the outdoors.
An interview with Dennis Wilder, Founder of PITO
How Did PITO Begin?
God stirred in me while I was a Pastor in Hopkinsville, KY. I met with another Pastor, Joe Bufford and Keith Boggs, Founder of Real Momentum, and shared my heart to offer a deer hunt for Pastors in our county (#1 big buck county in KY). Keith and Joe immediately loved the idea and in October 2015 PITO hosted the first Pastors in the Outdoors Retreat.
Who are the key players in PITO?
Dennis Wilder, Ministry Leader. Keith Boggs, Founder & President of Real Momentum Men’s Ministries. PITO is under the umbrella of RMM as non-profit organization. Many other Pastors who have experienced our retreats and help us accomplish the vision.
Plus, Kentucky Baptist Convention, Tennessee Baptist Mission Board, LifeWay Pastors, Bear Archery, No Scent (scent elimination), Mastins Deer Scents, Vapple Products, all believe in what PITO does to encourage Pastors and make donations to help accomplish The PITO vision.
What is PITO?
Pastors in the Outdoors exists to encourage Pastors to continue the ministry through exceptional outdoor retreat experiences.
What Problem(s) does PITO seek to remedy? What is PITO’s Mission?
Pastors have a demanding job. They aren’t looking for pity, but many desperately need someone to come alongside them and let them know that they are not alone in the ministry. They are men and we focus on them as Men of God. In Exodus 17 Moses, the Man of God, was standing on a mountain overlooking a battle between his people, the Israelites, and Amalekites. When Moses held up his hands the Israelites would win, when his hands got tired the Amalekites would be winning, so two men stood beside Moses supporting his hands and the Bible says, “his hands were steady till the going down of the sun.” The Israelites were victorious. We long to be like those two men who support the man of God so that the church can be victorious.
How does PITO fulfill it’s mission?
We offer 3-day exceptional hunting or fishing retreats. All expenses are paid, license, food and lodging at great locations for great game. Bass fishing Lake Okeechobee, FL, Hog Hunting Retreat, Mt. Vernon, GA, Deep Sea Fishing Retreat, Destin, FL, Turkey Hunting Retreat, GA, KY & NE. Deer Hunting Retreat, KY & NE, Duck Hunting Retreat, TN, Pheasant Hunting Retreat, SD. We focus on Biblical truths, sharing our stories and praying for each individual Pastor.
What Has PITO Accomplished Since it’s Conception?
In just 2 years we have encouraged over 75 Pastors, refreshed their spirit and revived them to continue working for the Lord.
How Can Readers Get Involved in PITO?
There are plenty of ways people can be involved.
- Send your Pastor on a retreat. $500 guarantees your Pastor will be encouraged at one of our retreats, and he will be encouraged knowing that you care enough to send him. Some Pastors have been sponsored twice by his people.
- Pray for your Pastor daily, so that he can lead the local church to accomplish God’s mission.
- Sponsor a retreat for Pastors. A private donor or a business can sponsor an entire retreat for only $2500. Sponsors will be highlighted on our promo video of the retreat.
- Landowners can offer PITO use of their land for hunting. Boat owners can take PITO out fishing during a retreat. Businesses can donate hunting related for PITO to use during retreats, to give to pastors, or as a fundraiser. All donations land, time or items are tax deductible from Real Momentum Ministries as a 501c3 non-profit.
You can contact PITO through:
Dennis Wilder, Ministry Leader
Dennis Wilder is the Director of Missions for Cumberland Gap Baptist Association. He founded Pastors in the Outdoors in 2015. See Dennis’ full bio here.