Update: Because an in-person retreat in confined spaces for multiple days is not advised, the 2021 ACTS retreats are going to be canceled. Let us pray for an end to the COVID pandemic.
Why Take Time for ACTS?
How often are you tempted to answer the question, “How are you?” with “I am busy.” We get consumed by what’s immediately in front of us. Sometimes we are so busy we miss the people in our life and the chance to encounter them. We get consumed by our busyness.
“The ACTS retreat was a wonderful experience. Spending a weekend with God is something all of us should experience. I came away with a real sense of Jesus’ presence in my heart. I recommend ACTS to all Catholic men.” – Tom O’Leary
Think about it. The God of the universe wants to spend time with you today. How crazy is that? Don’t be so busy you miss the encounter. Join the two hundred fifteen (215) men and women that have attended a Church of Saint Mary’s ACTS Retreat.
What Happens on an ACTS Retreat?
The ACTS retreats are for adults at least 21 years of age held at Our Lady of Guadalupe Retreat Center in Luther, Oklahoma. Women and men retreat separately. The weekend retreat begins on Thursday evening and ends on Sunday at the 10:30 a.m. Mass celebrated with the parish community. The retreat incorporates a wide range of Catholic praise and worship including Mass, adoration, the rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, and Sacred Scripture.
“The retreat opens our eyes to the people on retreat with us beyond our comfort zones, remaking us into outward-looking, Spirit-infused brothers and sisters—no matter whom we are or where we come from—ministering members of the supernatural community called the Body of Christ, the Church.” – Mary Freeman
“The retreat proved to me that you are never too old or young to get reconnected with God. Most gratifying weekend I ever had. I got goosebumps many times. Wonderfully organized.” – Butch Edingfield
Participants hear of the experiences of God’s presence in ordinary lives and of answered prayer; have the freedom to openly discuss their real spiritual questions; see the relevant application of the Gospel in the lives of fellow parishioners; and witness first-hand how faith is authentically lived out.
“I decided to go on the ACTS retreat to re-group and re-center my Faith. I didn’t know what to really expect – except for some praying time and scriptures reading. What I discovered was absolutely profound and genuine allowing me to experience the very best of God. I came back exceedingly transformed and reconnected to my Faith. My focus now is living my Faith – being of service with a willingness to accept God’s direction with an open heart.” – Carine Martinez
Talk themes revolve around:
Adoration: the call by, acceptance of and response to God.
Community: the love and caring of each other
Theology: the study of God through scripture and the Catholic faith
Service: to God and his people!
“ACTS is like taking your soul to Disneyland …..the best part is the park never closes and you never have to leave” – Craig Naumann
COVID Protocol on the retreat
The safety of the Team and the retreatants is of utmost importance during the upcoming women and men’s ACTS retreat. Safety protocols have been developed in order to provide the safest environment possible for all in attendance. Below is an overview of all protocols in place.
General practices that will be followed throughout the retreat:
- Retreatants will travel in personal vehicles to the retreat center in a caravan from the Church of Saint Mary. Maps and toll money (for those without PikePass) will be provided.
- Wellness and Temperature checks
- All retreatants will self report on their health at check in before departing for the retreat center.
- All retreatants will have temperatures taken before departing for the retreat center.
- All persons will have temperatures taken upon arrival at the retreat center and daily each morning before breakfast.
- All persons will answer a daily questionnaire about possible COVID symptoms each morning.
- Masks will always be worn except when eating and drinking.
- Masks are to cover the mouth and face. Face shields are not considered masks.
- Disposal masks will be available for all at all times.
- Social distancing and adherence to CDC, state, local and retreat center COVID guidelines will be enforced throughout retreat.
- Each retreatant cabin will be limited to 1-4 people, 1-2 per side.
- In the Chapel, only every other pew will be utilized, with assigned seats for the duration of retreat.
- In presentation rooms and dining room, no more than 4 people per table [placed six feet apart] with assigned personal space for the duration of the retreat.
- Cleaning and Sanitation
- Sanitizing stations will be placed at all the entrances of each building and used upon entering and exiting.
- Restrooms and cabin bathrooms will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized each morning and after bio-breaks throughout the day.
- Common use areas will be wiped down and sanitized between activities.
- Food Service
- Time will be allotted for handwashing prior to each meal.
- Meals, snacks, and drinks will be served following the retreat center’s COVID Protocols and packaged in individual serving containers with disposal utensils.
- No food or drink will ever be passed among retreat participants.
- Snacks and drinks will be single serving size.
Every Thursday morning – You are invited to attend the 6:30 am Mass, pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet and then participate in fellowship, breakfast bites and reflection on the upcoming Sunday Gospel. We are averaging around 40 Mass attendees and about 16 of those are able to participate in the fellowship and reflection before heading off to work at 7:30 am.
- Men – 1st Friday of the Month – 6:30 am Mass followed by breakfast and fellowship and faith walk sharing at BBD
- Women – 2nd Monday of the Month – in the library 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm – snacks, song and community building in the library
- 1st Friday Holy Hour – ACTS Communal Prayer from 5:00-6:00 p.m. ending with Benediction