Spiritual Retreats

For Orthodox Christians a pilgrimage is a journey or search of great moral significance to the Orthodox belief and faith. The object of any particular pilgrimage can vary greatly, from pilgrimages of great meaning to all Orthodox believers to those that may have significance to believers in a local area. A person who makes such a journey is called a pilgrim....

Pilgrimages by Christians were first made to sites connected with the birth, life, crucifixion, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Surviving descriptions, such as that by the pilgrim Egeria, of Christian pilgrimages to the Holy Land date from the fourth century, when pilgrimage was encouraged by church fathers like St Jerome. Pilgrimages also began to be made to Rome and other sites associated with the Apostles, various saints, and Christian martyrs.

Over time it became common to make pilgrimages to the Reliquaries of the saints, Cathedrals and Monasteries as well.

Based on: http://orthodoxwiki.org/Pilgrimage

Upcoming Retreats:


"Everyday Saints: My Personal Encounters with Holy People"

Archpriest Basil Rhodes of St. Nicholas', Saratoga, CA


"The Virtues, the Passions, and the Healing of the Soul"

Nun Melania of Holy Assumption Monastery, Calistoga, CA

November 14th, 15th and 16th; 2014
December 12th, 13th and 14th; 2014
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to meet a Saint or even a saintly person?  We come in contact with many people in our lives.  Each makes an impression on us, and sometimes such encounters are unforgettable and even life-changing. Archpriest Basil Rhodes has had the unique opportunity of meeting many remarkable people. In this retreat, Father Basil shares his first-hand account and impressions of holy people he has met. To name just a few:
Fr. John Krestiankin, archimandrite of the Pskov Caves Monastery of Russian Orthodox Church known as a clairvoyant and a wonderworker.
Fr. John Karastamatis of the Prophet Elias Church in Santa Cruz, CA--an exceptional priest who died a martyric death in 1985.
Fr. Seraphim Rose, co-founder of St. Herman Monastery in Platina, CA—whose writings have influenced many seekers, both in this country and especially abroad.
Fr. Ephraim, the former Abbot of Philotheou monastery on Mt. Athos, and currently at St. Anthony’s in Florence, AZ—a known clairvoyant, spiritual guide and elder.
Have you ever wondered why you keep falling into the same sins over and over again? The passions are like that. When they are rooted in the soul, we seem to have no choice but to 'do the things we know we shouldn't do.'

The prophet Jeremiah once wrote: 'the heart is devious above all else; it is perverse— who can understand it?' In this series of talks, Mother Melania explores the nature of the passions and how they work to disrupt our souls.  She also gives the Church’s teaching on how to receive real healing from our passions and freedom to be restored to fellowship with God and each other.

Mother Melania is the Superior of the Holy Assumption Monastery in Calistoga, CA.

Read more about the Holy Assumption Monastery at: http://www.holyassumptionmonastery.com/


"The Development of Lent and Holy Week in the Liturgical Services"

Archpriest James Jorgeson, retired


"The Way to Union with Christ through Watchfulness and Prayer"

Abbot Damascene of St. Herman Monastery, Platina, CA

February 6th, 7th, and 8th; 2015
March 27th, 28th, and 29th; 2015
The Church in her wisdom has assigned each of the seasons of the year a period of fasting and re-orienting the soul to the "one thing needful" and of the Fasts the richest is undoubtedly that of Great Lent - the period before the feast of Pascha.

Join us as Fr. James guides us in looking more closely at the beauty and depth of the mind of the Church in the her services during this period known as the "springtime of the soul".
A panoramic overview of Orthodox Christian teaching on salvation and deification in the Church: what Christ has done to unite us with God, and what we are to do to become one with Him.

The teaching is covered "chronologically": from the creation of the world, mankind's original condition, the Fall, and the world's redemption by Christ, to the life of a Christian in the Church, and to the final state of deification in the eschaton.

Emphasis is placed on the practical dimensions of watchfulness and prayer as means to union with Christ -- drawn from the Holy Scriptures, the writings of the Holy Fathers, and the counsels of modern-day elders.


"Journey to Eden: The Image
of Christ in Creation"

Hieromonk Innocent of St. John Monastery, Manton, CA


"Building an Orthodox Christian Family in 21st century America"

Priest Josiah Trenham of St. Andrew's, Riverside, CA

April 17th, 18th, and 19th; 2015
May 15th, 16th, and 17th; 2015
Fr. Josiah serves as the rector of St. Andrew Antiochian Orthodox Church in Riverside, CA. Many have been greatly edified by his recorded talks as can be heard on Ancient Faith Radio, www.ancientfaith.com, and Patristic Nectar Publications at patristicnectar.org.

When a family is founded on Christ-centered principles it can be a powerful source of healing for everyone who encounters it. Yet, in our spiritually impoverished times, it has sadly become a rarity. Many young couples do not know what marriage is, and how Christ has blessed it for the salvation of both spouses. Children are a great blessing when they come, yet few truly understand how to spiritually mold and shape them from their earliest infancy on through adulthood. The first steps of a newly-married couple are toward the Church. They are expected to make their home like a little church, yet how many diabolical temptations assault the Christian home in our times!

Sample Schedule:

Pilgrims arrive in the afternoon and evening
5:00 Vespers
6:30 Supper
7:30 Introductory Session
8:45 Compline

7:00 Service in Chapel (Jesus Prayer, Hours, Divine Liturgy)
9:30 Breakfast
10:30 Second Session
1:00 Lunch
2:00 Third Session
4:00 Free time
5:00 Supper
6:00 Q & A, or one-on-one meetings
7:00-10:00 Vigil

8:00 Service in Chapel (Jesus Prayer, Hours, Divine Liturgy with Homily)
10:30 Breakfast
11:30 Wrap-up Session
12:30Pilgrims travel home

$125 per person, Couples $200
Please contact us to make your reservation

For directions to the monastery please go to the "Contact Us" page.