Campus Ministry » Student Retreats

Student Retreats

Frequently Asked Questions:
Why does the school offer Retreats?
Retreats are a common component of many spiritual traditions.  They answer the inner calling to step away from the ordinary and routine in order to be redirected and regrounded in regards to what is most important and most desired.  As a Catholic school, the retreats at Bishop Alemany High School provide the students with the opportunity to develop a better sense of their self, to build relationships with others, and to grow closer with God.  All Alemany students are required to attend a retreat during the school year as part of their Religion grade. 
Where do the retreats take place?
Our retreats happen off-campus at various Catholic retreat centers in the Southern California area.  These centers are specially organized to provide meeting space, meals, lodging and a chapel in a quiet and peaceful environment.  Each of the four retreats happen at a different location, depending on the length of stay, the size of the groups that normally attend, and the needs of the particular retreat program.
What do the students do on retreat?
At the retreats, the students spend days filled with creative activities, group discussions, quiet time, prayer services, and a Catholic Mass.  Meals and snacks are included in the schedule and provided through the retreat centers or the retreat program.  
Who leads the retreats?
All of our retreats have a designated Bishop Alemany faculty retreat director.  Working with them on each individual retreat are a number of faculty chaperones, other adult chaperones, and a team of youth leaders from Bishop Alemany. 
What if the student is not Catholic?
As a Catholic school, Bishop Alemany is committed to the spiritual development of every person.  Students who are not part of the Catholic faith are encouraged and supported in the development of their own self in their own faith tradition.  We do not proselytize or discriminate.  Non-Catholic students attend the retreat and use it as an opportunity to hear the call of God and to grow in their own faith. It is not uncommon that our non-Catholic students so enjoy the retreat experience that they want to be youth retreat leaders for other retreats!
What should students bring on the retreats?
Before students go on the retreats they are given a list of what they should and should not bring with them on the retreat.  Most commonly, students are invited to wear comfortable and appropriate clothing and shoes.  They are asked to have any electronic devices (cell phones, airpods etc.) turned off throughout the day, so as to eliminate any unnecessary distractions.  You can download copies of these sheets by printing out the file attached to this page.  Note:  A separate form is included for each of the Valyermo and Kairos retreats.
Where can I get the required permission slips?
It is preferred that students pick up the permission slips at the Campus Ministry Center.  In this way we can meet the students, provide the latest information about the retreat to them, and notify them of the number of spaces still available (the retreats do fill up!). 
Information on the particular retreats:
Freshmen and Sophomore Retreats.
The Freshman and Sophomore retreats are one-day retreats held at Bishop Alemany High School.  The retreats focus on having an authentic relationship with Jesus.The structure of the retreats includes presentations, large and small group discussions, and a variety of activities. Under adult supervision and the retreat director, the retreat is primarily led by the N.E.T. missionaries. 
Junior - "Discipleship"
The Junior retreat is a three-day retreat at St. Andrew's Abbey Retreat Center, 31001 N Valyermo Rd, Valyermo, CA 93563 California.  The retreat focuses on vocation discernment and Christian discipleship.  Through presentations, large and small group discussions and a variety of engaging activities, the students examine God's presence in their lives and how God might be calling them to live right now and in the future.  Under adult supervision and the faculty director, the retreat is led by current Seniors who have received the necessary training and preparation.  Transportation is provided by bus. The retreat includes daily Mass as well as the opportunity for Confession.
There are sleeping facilities for the males and the females. The meals are wonderful and the environment is peaceful and prayerful.
Seniors - "Kairos"
The senior retreat is a four-day retreat at St. Edward's Retreat Center, 5701 Acorn Dr, Wrightwood, CA 92397The Kairos retreat format has been in existence since 1965.  It is used by many Catholic schools across the country.  The retreat gives an experience of community to the students while they explore what it means to live a holy life in accordance with God's will.  The retreat is well-structured with various presentations, large and small group discussions, and ample opportunities for personal and group prayer.  Under adult supervision and the Kairos Director, the retreat is primarily led by Bishop Alemany alumni.  The retreat includes daily Masses and the opportunity for individual Confession.
Junior and Senior One Day Retreats
Juniors and Seniors not opting to go on an overnight retreat can attend a one-day retreat held for their class throughout the year.