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Our History

Building a Legacy

Inn of Last Resort 22-acre property

Honoring the Past.
Embracing the Future.

Founded in 1971, The Inn of Last Resort has a rich history of leaders who have devoted their lives to teaching and training young men and women how to find lasting fulfillment in the truth of three simple words: Life Is Relationships.

Our programs are like an immersion into a new language – the language of living in Jesus. It is when we learn to live in Jesus that radical change occurs in our lives and relationships.

Lives Changed
Our Founders

Jay & Sally Fesperman

By the 1960s, Jay Fesperman had earned a reputation as a successful businessman and international consultant. He and his wife, Sally, had also raised a family and spent years serving in youth ministry. In 1971, they were looking for a small place where they could eventually settle down and retire, but God had other plans. Instead, they wound up buying the old Wayah Valley Inn with 22 acres and space to sleep 50 on the outskirts of Franklin, North Carolina. The Fespermans named the lodge The Inn of Last Resort and began a legacy of discipleship built on relationships.

Directors Emeritus

Larry & Susan Pons

Larry and Susan Pons, along with their four children, arrived in 1980. With an extensive background in family ministry, they came alongside Jay and Sally and witnessed a remarkable global expansion of the ministry while maintaining the original principles the Fespermans championed.

With their guidance, participants from over 100 nations received instruction and training through the life-changing Train to Reign program they developed and taught at the Inn.

The Pons also implemented the same biblical, relational model into the Heroes of Today programs. Through these transformative initiatives, hundreds of young people have not only learned about the preventive measures for a godly individual and family life but also experienced profound spiritual growth and the lasting impact of these challenging and empowering programs.

Now, after the Pons 40+ years of faithful service at the helm, Seth and Alicia Williams have come alongside to embrace the same vision ushered in by the Fespermans over 50 years ago.

Larry & Susan Pons and family
Seth & Alicia Williams and family
Current Directors

Seth & Alicia Williams

Seth and Alicia Williams became directors of The Inn in October 2021. Happily married since 2004, they have sought to extend a sense of family and belonging wherever they go. Their lives have been altered through encounters with Jesus and authentic relationships, and they are passionate to see marriages and families restored.

Seth and Alicia have spent years in ministry in Raleigh, NC, and Spokane, WA. At the Inn, their hearts are to carry on the Fesperman and Pons legacy to care for and train the ones whom the Father sends. Seth and Alicia have four amazing kids, and they all take part in showing the love of God through a lifestyle of hospitality and discipleship.

Leading at The Inn is a joy, an honor, and a humbling responsibility. They have seen the Lord do miracles, and as they remain faithful, they know that the Lord will continue to work powerfully in this special little place.

Where We've Been & Where We're Going

Our ministry is always evolving, yet our mission remains the same: We desire to see lives restored and generations transformed through encounters with the living God.

Our Story

Our Past

A New Identity

The Inn was renamed Christian Training Center International (CTCI), and in 1980, Larry and Susan Pons became the new ministry directors. CTCI became a place of ministry, refuge and restoration for countless individuals and families around the world.

Our Present

Returning to Our Roots

In 2023, the organization reverted to its original and official name, The Inn of Last Resort. After a tremendous amount of prayer and conversation, it was decided that this name represents the heartbeat of our ministry more fully. Training will always be an aspect of what we do, but we are foremost a place for the restoration of hearts and relationships. Led by ministry directors Seth and Alicia Williams, The Inn is a safe place for weary travelers to encounter Jesus.

Our Future

Looking Ahead

As we dream about what God has in store for The Inn, our emphasis will be on amplifying our message on a broader scale as we seek to recruit, fill and focus on our core programs: Train to Reign (families and individuals), Heroes Week (youth), summer internships (young adults) and community outreach events.

Cover for The Inn of Last Resort
The Inn of Last Resort

The Inn of Last Resort

Formerly Christian Training Center International, we are a ministry of healing, restoring & training.

YOU can help us reach more young people with the transformational power of the gospel! Join our group of monthly, recurring givers, the "Innkeepers:" 🌱 Living Proof That Healthy Things Grow ...“We attended The Inn many years ago as teenagers. Our sons Ethan and Samuel attended this year. It was great to see them grow spiritually, mentally and physically. We got to hear our son preach and teach for the first time, which brought tears to our eyes. We really appreciate The Inn and all the people there—all the time and effort they put into it. It changed our lives, and we hope that it changes our children’s lives as well.” – Kate & Seth Greenly ... See MoreSee Less
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