Rachel's Vineyard Ministries
Frequently Asked Questions
- How much do the weekends cost?
- How long are the weekends?
- Who runs the retreats?
- How many people will be there?
- Why is the retreat done in a group?
- Is Rachel's Vineyard confidential?
- Are the retreats also open to men?
The price varies between each individual site depending on the place where the retreat is held. Our site asks for a donation of $100.00. This price includes your room, all your meals, and all retreat materials. However, please do not let the donation be an obstacle for you to come and be healed. The donation is not necessary. What matters is that you come and receive the forgiveness you have been seeking.
We start our Rachel's Vineyard weekend at 7:00 on Friday evening and end about 4:00 in the afternoon on Sunday. You are invited to come and spend the entire weekend, have all your meals with us, you will have a private room for sleeping.. You can ask specific questions regarding each site from the local retreat coordinator.
Each weekend is composed of a group of people who have been trained in the Rachel's Vineyard process. They include a team consisting of a professional counselor, a trained lay spiritual director, women and men who have also experienced abortion, loving and nonjudgmental lay volunteers, and a representative of God -- a minister or priest.
These individuals volunteer their time freely, because they understand the importance of healing and recovery surrounding the pain of abortion. They are competent and caring individuals who will respect where you are in the grief process and help you move into a deeper level of healing.
Each exercise is an invitation to explore your feelings and emotions. Nothing will be forced on you at any time. The process is respective of different faith traditions and cultural heritage. You are invited to share with the group, but you can also process this experience privately within the silence of your own heart. There will be no effort to proselytize or convert you to Christianity, but simply an invitation to dialogue with your creator through a very personal and intimate process.
Typically have about 10-12 participants on each weekend. At some sites the size may be smaller or larger, depending on the facility. The group maintains a small and intimate size to allow each participant time for sharing and processing the exercises together. There is also a team of approximately 12 helpers and retreat team members who help facilitate the actual weekend, conduct the exercises, serve delicious meals and attend to any special needs you may have.
We see abortion as a trauma. Traumatic events are often aggravated by the need to keep it a carefully guarded secret whereby the toxic and shameful feelings have no voice. Healing for victims of trauma can be accomplished by establishing safety, reconstructing the trauma story, and restoring the connection between survivors and the community. A group context is very cathartic because others who "have been there" can provide validation of symptoms and a supportive, healing element to the process.
This does not negate the value of individual counseling and support, however, an experience of group process, particularly when family support can be introduced, often provides a deeper more complete level of healing. You may read about the experiences of others who have labored in Rachel's Vineyard.
Yes. When you sign up for a retreat, your name will not be given to any other individual or group for any circumstance. If you choose to be listed on a contact list for the other members of your weekend group, that is your decision. You can inquire about this program by e-mail or telephone and you can specify how you would like to receive any information. You might also choose to attend a Rachel's Vineyard weekend that is in a different location from where you live to assure complete anonymity.
Yes, the retreats are for women, men, and anyone who was involved in an abortion experience. Abortion affects both the mothers and fathers of the babies who are no longer with us. It also affects those who may have encouraged an abortion, driven someone to a clinic, or who may be a relative of the woman or man involved in an abortion. This healing ministry is open to all involved in an abortion.