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A Desert Experience Retreat is an opportunity for college students and young adults to learn and practice contemplation while hiking, exploring and camping in Death Valley National Park, CA.  It is a six night peer-led retreat experience that takes participants into the desert and challenges them to reflect on and discuss themes that lay the groundwork for a contemplative disposition.  We immerse ourselves into the different and unique landscapes of the park to aid in each day’s reflection.


This retreat insists that participants not be complacent on their faith journey and challenges them to go to deeper places – perhaps even to places that at first feel uncomfortable.  As Jesus went to the desert for 40 days to discern his mission and ministry, we too invite our retreatants into the desert to reflect on the big question:  “What’s it all about?”  All the great religions of the world agree that ultimately, this is where we all need to go.



  • To cultivate ongoing faith formation among participants, leading them into the beginning stages of adult spirituality.

  • To invite participants to view the reality of their lives through a non-dualistic lens. 

  • To teach participants how to pray with nature.

  • To build community and fellowship among the participants.

  • To foster the total personal growth of each participant.


As a result of participating in A Desert Experience Retreat, the retreatants:

  1. Learn how to confront their shadow selves in order to emerge closer to their True Selves.

  2. Immerse themselves into the Paschal Mystery – specifically, become aware of and name the dying and rising that is prevalent in their lives.

  3. Better recognize, acknowledge and celebrate the ways in which God is revealed (incarnated).

  4. Develop a wider perspective on life.

  5. Become better equipped to practice the art of giving up control and surrendering ego.

Day by Day Itinerary & Other Descriptions

"In the desert, you can remember your name."

- America 

© 2023 Certain Place Ministries

A 501(c) 3 Nonprofit Corporation

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