Sample Retreat

Overnight Rock Retreat Fall 2002:
a sample retreat for your use

Cross Conference Center   Saturday and Sunday, November 9th-10th

 Team:  Andy and Jen ,Carl and Carolyn ,Tish ,Christy


Andy and Jen: hymnals, CD player, Just Friends CD, centerpiece, Kleenex, paper towels, baked goods for snacks

Carl and Carolyn: hospitality kits, decks of cards, tablecloths, large map, Vis-à-vis pens, Chex mix

Tish: door tags, school bell, salty snacks, serving bowls or baskets, bucket

Christy: maps, nametags, paint pens, rocks, buckets, journals, chalk, note cards, rock bags, fruit, paper plates, PP notes, olive oil

Jean Galanti: coolers of water and soda



9:00    Team Arrives: Unload and organize supplies and refreshments (Christy, Andy, Jen, Carl).  Find out rooms and place door tags, prayer partner notes, and hospitality kits (Tish, Carolyn).


10:30  Guests Arrive

Gather people and help get settled.  If rooms are available, direct to rooms.  Refreshments will be out as they gather.  (Make sure nametags and journals are out for people who didn’t bring their own.)



Introduction and Business: ______Jen _____


11:15  Explain facilities and anything they might need to know (bathrooms, etc.)

Retreat team will introduce themselves and tell how long they have been involved with SCC.  Have groups introduce themselves and how long they have been together.  If they haven’t paid they can make a check out to St. Monica.


11:30  Give the group some time to write on a note card what they hope to gain from this retreat individually and as a group.  Explain that they don’t need to put a name on the card or share them.  The cards are passed in so that the team can read them and make any adjustments to the weekend that is needed.


Rock Talk/Lay Your Burdens Down: ______Carl _______


11:45  Song: “Gather Us In


11:50  Talk about the significance of rocks in the Bible and why we are using them as a symbol for the weekend.  Rocks are mentioned 60 times in the New Testament, almost as much as bread.  Life is full of hard boulders and beautiful rocks.  The boulders make it hard to see the beauty in rocks and life sometimes.  Carolyn read the children’s book “Everyone Needs a Rock.”


11:55  Reflection time to think of what might be the burdens that they come with and are weighing them down or are heavy in their hearts.  Journal those for 15 minutes (soft music in background “Lay Your Burdens Down”).


12:10  Pass out the rocks and white chalk.  Invite them to write one or two words in chalk on their rocks that would represent the burdens they reflected on.  Ask them to listen quietly to the words of the song as you play “Lay Your Burdens Down” again.  Then have them place their rocks in a pail of water for God to hold while they are here.



First Map Talk: _____Carolyn Sutton_______


12:15  Talk focuses on the boulders and beautiful rocks in all of our lives and that we will have an opportunity this afternoon to reflect on and share some of our own personal experiences with our group.  Introduce the Road Map and explain your own personal Road Map as an example.  (Before hand have examples from your life written on the large road map to show them as you go through your talk).  Remind them that there is no right or wrong way to do the map.  Each symbol could be interpreted as positive or negative or neutral depending on what comes to mind when you reflect on it.  Ask the group to take their time, reflect on each area, and jot some things down on their map.  Have markers, pencils, pens, colored pencils, etc.  Explain that lunch will be served and then they will have time to work on their maps.  Once they are ready to begin working on their maps after lunch they should find a quiet space to work by themselves.  They can also take a break once they are finished.  We will re-gather at 2:00 pm.  We finished early at 12:00 which caused some to only spend 30 min. on maps and just chat after lunch.  Either move lunch up or back next time.


12:30-1:15 LUNCH


Group Sharing: Two facilitators will be paired with each group for the remainder of the retreat.


Corydon Group: Carolyn and Carl, Medium Break Out Room

Mathioudakis Group: Jen and Andy, Large Break Out Room

Haselby Group: Tish and Christy, Room C


2:00    Song: ________________________


2:05    Split into their groups in their own spaces.  Each group has a deck of cards.  Have each person draw a card.  During the next 20 minutes you will go with the partner whose card matches yours and share about the first three items on the map: Rocks, Meadow, Bridge.  Each person will have 10 minutes to share.  Simple sharing – no questions or discussion, just listen carefully to your partner.  You can go anywhere, as long as you can hear the bell.  At the bell come back to the group space.


2:30    Invite each person to take 5 min. to write down one or two things they heard their partner share that was significant in their life.


2:35    Redistribute the cards and share with a new partner, this time on Quick Sand, Lemonade Stand, and Cave. (Partners should not be spouses or the same as last round.)


2:55    Come back and write down a few significant things their partner shared.


3:00    Do a third pairing and share on Mountain, Valley, and Lake.


3:20    Come back and journal on what you heard.


3:30    BREAK – Free time until 5:30


* Set up for evening: Christy and Tish


5:30    DINNER


6:30    Song: ________________________


6:35    Come back to your small group and each person picks a card (only one of each number this time).  Whoever has 1, the three people that shared with them each tell what you heard as they spoke that made an impression on you.  Again, simple sharing without discussion.  Facilitator may want to give an example: “I heard Andy say that a lemonade stand was the early years of his marriage to Jen when they took some special trips together.”  Continue to 2, 3, until everyone has had a chance to hear others share about their map story.



God is in on the Road with us: _____Tish ___


7:30    Song: ______________________


7:35    Talk on how God is with us on our journey, whether we see Him or not.  Sometimes we can only see in retrospect where he was on our Road Map.  Share on the large road map how you have seen God at work in the good and bad times.  Share times when you felt close to or far from God.


7:50    Journal time on their own maps about where they saw God in the different times in their life.  Where was God in the picture?  Where did you see him most easily and where was it hardest to see him?


8:30    Divide each group in half to share on where they saw God.


9:30    Free time, Games







Group on my Journey: ______Christy_____


9:15    Talk on SCC support.  We are now moving from personal reflection on our own lives and faith to reflection on our SCC.  Remind them of the purpose of SCC – to help us see God in every day life and to be Christ for each other.  Talk about the times where your group has helped you see God, and when they have been Christ to you.  Use both specific and more general examples.  Ask them to journal about how their groups have helped them see God and been Christ for them.


9:30    Journal time


9:50    In group area, come together to do simple sharing on how your group has supported you.  Use cards to facilitate order.  No discussion.


10:20  Journal time on what specifically do you need from your group as you go forward on your journey?


10:40  Come back to group area and again do simple sharing on needs.  Then process as a group “How can we meet those needs together.”


12:00  LUNCH


* Set up for Heartstones: Jen and Carolyn




God’s Polishing/Heart Stones: _______Jen_______


12:45  Song: _______________________


12:50  Acknowledge the hard work they have all done.  We come in all shapes and sizes and many times we have sharp edges.  We are rocks on the seashore and as we rub and live with each other the water and powerful waves of the Holy Spirit come and rinse away our imperfections and constantly remolds us.  We rub against each other, smoothing the sharp and jagged edges.  Use the visual of a dirty rock and give examples of how your group members have helped you by rubbing away the dirt and showing you your own beauty and value.  Doesn’t always feel good.


1:00    Make Heart Stones.  Each person will write on a stone in paint pen a gift that each other person in their group brings to the group.  Give some examples, and then allow them quiet time to create all of their stones.


1:30    In group space, each person gets a cloth bag.  When it is a persons turn, everyone else in the group places their stone in his or her bag and says what they wrote on it and why they value that gift.  We also did a quick evaluation – on a note card write what was best about the retreat and any suggestions for future retreats.


*Help Father Paul set up for mass: Andy and Carl if necessary.


Mass: ______Father Paul______


2:30    As part of mass, do an anointing by having each group stand in a circle and anoint the person next to them.  Play the Servant Song during the anointing.  Father Paul did an awesome job – talked about SCC being family to each other and asked them to bless each other as brother and sister.  He had them sign the person next to them with oil saying “I bless you as my brother/sister.”  Everyone remained in a circle and held hands during the servant song.  It was awesome.


3:30    Dismissal


We gave each PF a blank map so they could revisit the exercise in the future or do it with a person who wasn’t able to attend.

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