About Wafloy Mountain Village
Wafloy Mountain Village is a Christian Retreat Center located just outside of Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Under new management and ownership, we look forward to building on Wafloy’s long, rich history of seeing lives impacted by Christ.
Wafloy Mountain Village is located just outside of Gatlinburg, Tennessee.
In 1947, Floy Bell and her husband, W.A., both school teachers in Knoxville, bought a piece of mountain property with the intent of creating a Christian retreat that would serve as a place to rejuvenate, heal, and strengthen the physical and spiritual being of youth and adults.
After her husband’s early death, Floy Bell moved to the property with even more intensity to make her village a very special place. Wafloy, as it was named, flourished and throughout the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, many structures were built including a two-story youth lodge, a thirty-two room hotel atop the mountain with a panoramic view of the Great Smoky Mountain’s Greenbrier Pinnacle, approximately twenty other housing and meeting facilities, a beautiful Chapel and a small 1950s style motel. Wafloy hosted visitors from at least 43 countries, and has been used as a Christian youth camp and adult retreat center since the 1950s.
Floy Bell, who managed the 100 acre campus until the age of 95, turned the management of the village over to her grandson and his wife in 2001. They are now in their 60s and 70s. In June of 2013, with much prayer and deliberation, they sought a partner who would help maintain the vision of Floy and W.A. Bell, and one whom had been a long-term and substantial user of the village. They approached Corryton Church to consider assuming the management and control of the property.
The goal is to establish Wafloy as one of the most sought after Christian youth camps in the region, to facilitate Christian adult seminars, conferences, retreats, and weddings, while bringing glory to God, and helping people say “yes” to God.
A Mission Revived
The “mission” that God placed on the hearts of W.A. and Floy Bell has been revived and the banner lifted for future generations to come and be blessed as they gather here!
From of 2014 or to date, Wafloy has undergone many amazing refurbishment and reviving transformations, yet still remains true to the historical roots laid by the original founders. Each group building has its own autonomy and is a perfect place to fellowship and be set apart as a group for time with each other and the Lord.
This restorative labor of love continues to bring together construction companies donating skilled labor, contractors donating materials, an architectural designer donating services, and numerous small businesses donating their time, materials, and skills from their respective businesses. We continue to upgrade, update and improve existing structures while also looking for ways to expand in new areas while remaining true to the overall atmosphere that is unique to Wafloy Mountain Village.
Our thanks to the Eidemiller Family who began the first few years of this regenerating phase of Wafloy. Along with them and the faithful and numerous donations from churches, individuals, and businesses, we have once again begun to host almost 200 groups here a year!
Steady Course – New Leadership
The year 2018 has brought the opportunity to streamline our focus and improve our outreach.
In December of 2017, William Hunt and his family came to Wafloy on Sabbatical. William has been a Pastor for 11 years and is originally from West Virginia. He and his wife, Amber along with their three children, came to Wafloy and began volunteering as they rested and recovered and waited on the Lord. In April of 2018, William became Wafloy’s Director of Facilities & Property Management.
In August of 2018, Donna Miller was brought to Wafloy as the Director of Marketing & Guest Relations. She has over 20 years of experience as a YMCA Family Program Director and Non-profit Residence Camps and Outdoor Recreation.
From the early 1980’s to late 1990’s Donna began accompanying her husband, Joseph, then a youth leader, to bring many youth groups to Wafloy from several states in the Southeast. Joseph had attended camp here as a teen and had always felt a connection to Wafloy as he would sit and listen to the poetry read by Mrs. Bell. So, with prayer, they began to seek God on how they could be involved. As years passed the hope never dimmed and upon closing a long running career, Donna sent in a resume to Wafloy and waited, for almost two years.
The call that came unexpectedly to interview as Director of Marketing & Guest Relations was an answer to 33 years of prayer. Donna often says now that what we think of as ‘last minute’ answers to prayer really should remind us of how infinite our God is! He has unlimited minutes and is always laying out the steps toward His answer.
It is with gratitude for the opportunity to serve and amazement at the prayers answered that Donna looks forward to what God will bring for the future of Wafloy and the lives that are forever impacted here for His Kingdom.
WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
We press on toward the mark of His high calling! We want to grow, improve and see God’s Kingdom flourish and are excited to see Wafloy instrumental in this vision.
With the new structure of two Directors, each with their own areas of expertise and high standard of service, we feel the future is wide open with opportunities to serve returning and new guests with an environment that encourages their spiritual growth.
Renovations continue and new facilities are in the plans. All of these plans will continue to maintain the original mission and atmosphere that is unique to Wafloy by allowing each group to have a sense of stewardship and intimate setting of their own accommodations while they are here.
If you would like to keep up with all the exciting renovations, innovations and updates with Wafloy, please consider signing up for our very occasional Newsletter.
Each volunteer, management team member and director here at Wafloy is dedicated and humbled by the opportunity to serve while we continue to establish Wafloy Mountain Village as a time-honored Christian Retreat Center where groups can come to fellowship, rest, revitalize and people can say “Yes” to God!