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Women’s Advent Retreat

December 6, 2019 - December 7, 2019

A Time for Reflection
Women’s Guided Gratitude Workshop

Sponsored by the Episcopal Church Women (ECW) of the Diocese of Southern Virginia

Dates: December 6-7, 2019
For women 18+

Click here for a flyer for this event to share with your friends and parish.


  • Friday and Saturday: $95 shared room or $135 for private room (includes reception, accommodations, meals, and program)
  • Saturday only: $35 (lunch and program)

Join women from around the Diocese at Chanco on the James as we gather together to explore a fresh new approach to journaling as an avenue for spiritual discovery, renewal, and enrichment.

We invite you to come and find your wings to write your story during Advent 2019, and beyond. Participants will consider, reflect upon, and capture stories of gratitude while guided by a professional Personal Historian. Stories of a grateful heart link us to family, history, love, prayers, and lessons learned through the challenges.

The Guided Gratitude Workshop will explore the following topics:

  • The importance of story
  • Mindfulness and the benefits of gratitude
  • Overcoming life’s challenges with a grateful heart
  • How to stay “journal motivated” during the Advent Season and beyond
  • How changing the way you write just might change your life

Schedule: The Advent Retreat includes an optional Friday evening program beginning 7:00 pm (registration and check-in at 6:00 pm) with hors d’oeuvres, wine, and cheese in a relaxed “get to know you” atmosphere. Friday’s program will strive to address an important question for persons of faith as we enter the Season of Advent: How can we build and nurture sustainable spiritual practices?

Overnight guests will enjoy breakfast at 9 am.

The Saturday workshop begins at 10 am (registration and check-in at 9:30 am) and will be delivered in two 2-hour segments with Noonday Prayer and lunch in between. At the heart of the program is a 4-hour Guided Gratitude Workshop. Participants are asked to bring a “fine-feeling” pen and a notebook or a journal of their choice. Working in groups and as individuals, participants will be professionally guided through several writing prompts.

Facilitators and Coordinators: This event will be sponsored by the ECW and hosted by Chanco, with members from both groups on hand to serve at the event.

Friday’s program will be conducted by the Rev. Catherine “Cathy” Tyndall Boyd. Cathy is the Rector of St. Martin’s in Williamsburg. Cathy authored Forward Day by Day for August 2109 and served as the Chaplain of the 49th Triennial Meeting of the National ECW in Austin, TX. Cathy was also a featured speaker at this meeting. Cathy notes that some of her favorite times in ministry have been spent in retreat and fellowship with women’s groups, saying “I love opportunities for small-group spiritual conversation. When we make these spaces in our busy lives, the Holy Spirit is revealed and we see Christ’s love for us in the face of others.”

The program on Saturday will be facilitated by Nanette Fimian Randall, founder of Memoirs by Design. Nanette is an experienced interviewer, writer, trainer, and professional personal historian, and will create a comfortable and encouraging setting in which to guide our participants through the journaling workshop and into a blessed Advent.

Ronda Toll, a member of the Chanco Board and the ECW Board, and Cornelia Taylor, Chaplain for Chanco on the James, are also assisting with the event.

Register Now


December 6, 2019
December 7, 2019
Event Category:


Chanco on the James
394 Floods Drive
Spring Grove, VA 23881 United States
+ Google Map
(888) 724-2626


Chanco on the James
888 - 7CHANCO (888 724-2626)