Pastoral Planning

Enjoy our peaceful country setting while prioritizing the time to focus on your planning


Pastoral Planning

Our desire in providing a space for pastoral planning is to allow Pastors to have a change of environment while they zoom out and do their big picture planning for the semester, year, or beyond. Getting away from your daily workspace will allow you to think differently and prioritize the space needed to dream, enjoy God’s creation, get some work done, and present your plans before the Lord.
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Times of Pastoral Planning are offered to individuals, teams of pastors, elders, deacons, or church leadership. Upon your arrival, our host will greet you, and after guiding you to your meeting space will provide a short orientation and introduction to you/your group. They will be available to you during your entire stay to help with any needs that may come up, leaving you to lead conversations with your team, plan together, or plan individually at your own pace. Being that we customize all of our experiences, we’re happy to simply step back and give you the space you need. We believe that the ability to mix things up by working inside and then stepping away to take in God’s creation is the perfect environment to walk the line of being productive while also allowing creative juices to flow and resting in the Lord’s presence. If you desire more of us, additional activities would need to be requested and planned in advance.

Planning Spaces

Choose from the Grace Center or our Casa Grande meeting room to have an indoor meeting area with tables, white boards, and ample space to spread out while you meet as a team. If you’re a Pastor coming on your own, use your own cabin as a space to plan, or choose a place outside in our pavilion, gazebo, or pergola. The Upper Room in the upstairs section of our Dining Hall would also be a good space for an individual.

Use of all spaces should be reserved in advance prior to your arrival. Please do not hesitate to inquire about prices, locations, and amenities of each space with our coordination team.


If you’re coming with your leadership team, deacons, or elders, we encourage you to schedule lunch as a group with us in our Dining Hall; or, feel free to bring your own food if it better suits you. The Grace Center does include a microwave and kitchen.

Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks are available for purchase in our dining hall when dining services are offered. Choose from a variety of different options and schedule the meals you’d like in advance with our coordination team when scheduling your retreat. The hours of service and menu selection will be based on availability.

Fresh water is always provided from our mountain spring and hot beverages are available for purchase with prior reservation as well. For a more rustic experience, choose to roast hot dogs over the fire for one of your meals and enjoy s’mores made with Ecuadorian chocolate for a sweet ending!


El Refugio offers a variety of options for overnight accommodations. Choose to stay in one of our cabins, dorm-style rooms, or spend the night at one of our campsites. If you’re an individual and would like to have your own cabin for day use, we recommend renting the Cooper Hermitage Cabin where you can light a fire, have a bed to lay on and a comfortable chair to sit in. It’s the perfect location for solitude and reflection. 

Dorm-Style Room: Accommodates up to 12 people, all contain bunk beds and one queen bed, and are conveniently located next to our Dining Hall. 

Cabins: These are ideal spaces for an individual, couple, or small family. This option provides a refrigerator, coffee and tea, and in certain cases your own kitchen or kitchenette. 

Camping: Available for those looking for a more rustic experience, enjoy hiking  and appreciate being a bit further away from the center of where most activities take place.

Contact our coordination team to learn more about prices, amenities, and locations to choose the space that will be best suited for your experience and needs. Hours of arrival and departure will be finalized with the coordination team.


Our hope is that after spending a day planning, connecting with the Lord, and enjoying the simplicity and beauty of God’s creation, you’ll go home not only with some concrete work accomplished, but also feeling refreshed and encouraged. This experience is aimed at providing you the space needed to zoom out and see where God is leading your ministry, while also getting into the nuts and bolts of planning. We know the value of having that space.

Customize your Experience

As always, our desire is to work with you to customize your experience to make it what you need. We love personalizing everything we offer! Consider adding some of the following components to your Pastoral Planning Retreat to make it your own:

+ Add on the use of the Cooper Hermitage Cabin if you’re only coming out for a day
+ Stay overnight instead of just spending the day and incorporate space for rest
+ Add any or all meals during your stay, depending on availability
+ Add a low ropes challenge for your team to set the stage in regards to teamwork and team dynamics
+ Add a high ropes challenge to stretch yourself personally or as a team, exploring concepts or faith and trust

Not what you're looking for?

Get in touch with our coordination team or check out these other options below to find what best suits you!