Retreat Nuts and Bolts: What you really need to know

Early, early, early; this is the key word for registration.

Every year, we have a waiting list for these retreats,Craigville Group
which are increasing in popularity.
Also, to help with early registration, we are requiring a deposit of only $135 of your expected total due. Registration for the 2017-2018 program year begins June 1, 2017.  No spaces will be held without a deposit and a tentative count of participants. The final count as well as payment and all paperwork will be required about 7-10 days prior to the retreat date.  Please try to realistically estimate who will actually attend when you register.  If you overbook, it prevents others from attending and if you underbook we may not have enough space for your group. The Conference reserves the right to cancel a retreat if a minimum number of participants is not met. Each facility has different capacities and we will advise churches of a cancellation as soon as it is possible.

What to Expect

Retreats begin PROMPTLY at 6:45 pm on Friday and conclude at 4:30 pm on Saturday. The cost is $135.00 per person which includes program expenses, lodging, breakfast, lunch and snacks. Leaders should be sure their groups arrive on time and are ready to go!!!  (Berkshire Retreat Center is $125 per person.)  Please note that the Conference tries not to raise fees while our facilities have imposed lodging and meal increases.

Dinner is NOT included on Friday evening.

Sample Confirmation Retreat Agend

Adult Leaders

All groups must have at least two adult leaders (1 for every five youth) who will provide supervision and participate along with the confirmands throughout the event. Adult leaders will be expected to help facilitate some of the activities as instructed by the Confirmation Leadership Team. Groups with 11-15 young people need a third leader. Leaders must reflect the gender balance of the group, i.e. an all male group should have two male leaders and groups with both male and female confirmands should have one male and one female leader. To insure safety and a quality program, groups of young people without two leaders will not be able to participate in the event. Please do not ask to amend this rule, this is for your protection as well as the safety of the youth!

Conference guidelines and Massachusetts law stipulate that we are required to obtain a Criminal Offense Record Investigation (CORI) report for all adult volunteers who will be supervising and/or driving youth. to MACUCC sponsored programs and events.  ALL adults will be CORI'd by the MACUCC which is a certified agency of the Department of Criminal Justice Information Systems.  This is just one of the ways that we are working to ensure that both adults and youth will be safe at Conference events.         

Retreat Program Manager:

Rev. Matt Carriker, (cell #774-270-2185)

As an ordained Christian minister in the United Church of Christ (UCC), Matt is also an author, spiritual coach, and retreat leader.  Matt is passionate about altering Christianity today into a spiritual tradition that models the unconditional love of God and the life and teachings of Jesus. The title of his upcoming book is “Giving Christianity back to Jesus.” 

Matt holds a number of part-time ministries.  In addition to being the Protestant Chaplain at Brandeis, Matt serves part-time as the Program Director for Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries (CMM), an interfaith social action organization that also runs the Interfaith Youth Initiative program.  Matt co-facilitates confirmation and adult spiritual formation retreats sponsored by the Mass. Conference UCC for youth and adults from across the 3 conferences. (MA, CT & RI)  

Matt leads a team of  7-8 facilitators that combine their skills and talents to implement the program theme at each retreat. Normally 3 facilitators are at each retreat rotating their schedule throughout the program year.


What to Bring

Sleeping bag or linens
Casual clothes and proper footwear
Snacks (some are provided-NO NUTS PLEASE)

Required Forms

1.  Required Forms for Retreat Leaders

A. Adult Volunteer Information Form - MUST BE DONE ONLINE.
Click here to complete online.

B. CORI Authorization Form (PDF)  Two page form required of ALL adults attending retreats.
Mail, fax (508-875-5485) or email to Cindy Bolton.

CORI's WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED FROM LOCAL CHURCHES (Please read the policy if you have questions.) 
(Click here to review the MACUCC policy regarding CORIs)

OUT of STATE churches must provide the appropriate background check required for youth leaders.

C. Adult Covenant (Signed)
One form per group----bring to retreat

D. Youth Convenant (Signed)
One form per group---bring to retreat

MACUCC Fax: 508-875-5485

2. Medical/Consent Forms-MACUCC

Everyone under the age of 18 must complete the medical-photo consent-release forms. Click your retreat date for the correct form; complete, sign and bring with you to the retreat. (Forms are shredded after the conclusion of the retreat.)

Confirmation Dates:

Nov. 17-18 at Prindle Pond
Jan. 26-27 at Craigville
March 2-3 at Prindle Pond
March 16-17 at Prindle Pond
March 23-24 at Craigville 

3. Health and Liability Form (Berkshire Outdoor Center only)

**Berkshire Outdoor Center also requires that ALL attendees (adults and youth alike) complete their form as well: Download Mandatory Berkshire Outdoor Center Form


4. Directions to the Retreat Centers

Directions to Craigville Retreat Center

Directions to Prindle Pond Conference Center, Charlton  (PONDSIDE)

Directions to Berkshire Outdoor Center (on the grounds of Chimney Corners YMCA Camp)