16th Annual South Georgia Conference Confirmation Retreat : March 2-4, 2018

Designed for students in the fifth grade and above, the “Join the Journey” Confirmation Retreat will provide churches of all sizes an opportunity to connect with others through worship, study, and fellowship.  The event will also include large group gatherings around the church seasons and breakout sessions with topics of grace, United Methodist History and United Methodist lingo as well as Holy Clubs throughout the weekend.

Not meant to be the only confirmation youth go through, the Confirmation Retreat should be complementary to what a church is or will be doing.

For more information, please contact Event Coordinator Suzanne Akins at suzanne@sgaumc.com or (912) 638-8626 ext 107.

Registration Information

Registration is now CLOSED. South Georgia UM church early registration began December 1, 2017. Registration for all other churches opened January 16, 2018. Deadline is February 12, 2018.

Payment is required at time of registration in order to be complete. Registrations received without payment will be considered PENDING and payment must be received within 7 days or registration will be dropped. Space is limited to the first 500 complete registrations and this event does fill up each year.

CANCELLATION 2 weeks before retreat's opening day = Total refund less $35.00. Within 1 week of retreat's opening day = No refund. Due to illness prior to retreat's opening day = Total refund less $35.00. Fees may be transferred to a NEW REPLACEMENT confirmand/chaperone of the same gender if the event coordinator is notified prior to the first day of the retreat.

If your group needs individual information forms to be filled out by each student and returned to your church's retreat coordinator for easier registration, click here to download. This is not the official registration form and cannot be mailed in. A full-color one page flyer to use for church promotion is available here.


Safe Sanctuaries Compliance

JOIN THE JOURNEY CONFIRMATION RETREAT is a Safe Sanctuaries compliant event. Click here to download the Safe Sanctuaries form. Only one form per church group is needed and this can be turned in at registration. Counselors must be 21 or older with a 1:6 ratio for counselor/youth. Both male and female counselors must be in attendance if both genders are represented with students.

Responsibility of Each Church

An Adult Leader's Guide will be provided at check-in as a resource for each church leader attending the retreat.

• Provide a sufficient number of chaperones (1 per 6) willing to be completely involved in the weekend.
• Be responsible for all medical and insurance forms for each of your youth attending - and bring them with you!
• Take care of all “in house” management of your church group - conflict, minor medical problems, free time options, following rules, etc.
• Don't let this be a one-stop shopping for your youth - follow up the retreat with confirmation classes, church recognition, etc.
Curriculum Recommendations :

General Sessions

Throughout the weekend, Confirmands will experience the liturgical seasons through music, teaching, videos and communion as they gather together four times as a large group. This high-energy, worshipful and interactive time will be yet another opportunity to learn more about Christ and His Church. Dynamic clergy from around the South Georgia Conference will share about God's work in their own lives and His desire for each of us as God's children. 


Friday Night: Advent & Prevenient Grace

Saturday Morning: Lent/Easter & Justifying Grace

Saturday Evening: Pentecost & Sanctifying Grace

Sunday Morning: Closing Worship, Communion & Send-off



Talkin' Funny - Understanding and defining the words we use as United Methodists – including Wesleyan terms, organizational terms, titles, etc. This workshop will help students get some sense of our organization, especially our "connection," and an understanding of key people and key terms they will hear.

Three Simple Rules - This is a study of the General Rules that were observed by the Methodist societies of John Wesley and that are found in our United Methodist Book of Discipline.  In this workshop students will explore what it means to do no harm, to do good, and to attend upon all the ordinances of God.  Book of Discipline, 2008; paragraph 103.

Packing for the Journey - Before you take the first step on a journey you must pack your bags.  This workshop will help students learn about things they will need on their journey of faith.  Students will learn about what it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus, how to grow in that relationship, and why it is important to serve others because of that relationship.

Holy Clubs

While John Wesley met with like-minded friends for prayer, Bible study, mutual accountability and good works, our own church groups will meet together for the same thing. Choose any location around campus, and questions will be provided.


A Holy Mystery

A large group spotlight on Holy Communion will give confirmands a deeper understanding of this rich, timeless sacrament, answering the who, what, where, when and why questions about The Lord's Supper.


Amazing (G)Race

Scattered around the campus of Epworth By The Sea are many an unknown fact of our United Methodist history. First team to complete this late-night competition at the final destination wins! 



The Confirmation Retreat Offering will once again go towards the South Georgia Conference Disaster Response fund to build our capacity to respond to disasters now and in the future. Teach and encourage your confirmands about giving as an act of worship. They will then have the opportunity to give their offering during the Sunday morning closing worship. 

Through Disaster Response our conference responds to natural or civil disasters of such magnitude that they overwhelm a community’s ability to recover on its own. United Methodists are able extend loving care to communities within the bounds of the South Georgia Conference. Wherever possible, we cooperate with other aid organizations to extend our reach.

Over the past 2 years alone our conference has seen 2 hurricanes, a major tropical storm, and multiple tornadoes leaving death and destruction in their wake. If and when something else happens within the bounds of our Annual Conference, we want to be able to respond immediately and with great care.



Participants will be sleeping in cabins at Epworth By The Sea.  See What to Pack for more information.


The cost is $60 per person for South Georgia UM churches and $135 per person for out-of-conference churches. This includes lodging, meals, programming, insurance and a t-shirt.


SCHEDULE (subject to change)

Friday, March 2nd

6:00 PM Check-in begins (Office of Connectional Ministries)

6:00 - 7:00 PM Supper Line Open

7:30 PM Adult Orientation (Lovely Lane)

8:00 PM Opening Worship (Strickland Auditorium)

9:30 PM Holy Clubs

10:30 PM In Cabins / Lights Out

Saturday, March 3rd

7:00 AM Breakfast Line Opens

8:30 AM Worship (Strickland Auditorium)

10:00 AM Workshop #1

11:00 AM Workshop #2

12:00 PM Cookout Under the Oaks

1:00 PM Workshop #3

2:00 - 4:00 PM Free Time (see below for options)

4:30 PM A Holy Mystery (Strickland)

5:30 - 6:45 PM Supper

7:00 PM Worship (Strickland)

8:30 PM Holy Clubs

9:30 PM The Amazing (G)Race

10:30 PM In Cabins / Lights Out

Sunday, March 4th

7:45 AM Breakfast Line Open

8:30 - 9:45 AM Mission Spotlight (Brown) - 2 groups 

10:00 AM Closing Worship & Communion (Strickland)

11:15 AM Lunch / Depart

FREE TIME OPTIONS (2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Saturday)
  • Methodist Museum Tour – Because a tour of the Arthur J. Moore Methodist Museum is not included in the schedule, churches will have the opportunity to sign up for 30-minute tours for 40 people each offered during free time on Saturday. You may sign your church up by calling the museum at (912) 638-4050. 
  • Fort Frederica – admission is $5 per vehicle. Fort Frederica is where Charles Wesley came with Oglethorpe to found the town and fort. Wesley was Oglethorpe's secretary and the Anglican (Church of England) minister. When he left, John Wesley would come down from Savannah to preach.
  • Wesley Gardens – a 2-acre garden with a large Celtic cross at the center as a monument to the Wesley brothers (John and Charles).
  • Christ Church – This congregation (not the building) claims its heritage back to the congregation Charles Wesley began at Fort Frederica. Contains historic cemetery with graves of many people who settled St. Simons Island .
  • Pier, Lighthouse, and Village Area – Here you will find a playground, shops, Neptune Park, lighthouse and museum, putt putt golf, whale sculpture, and the beautiful surroundings of the ocean. The Visitor's Center is also located in this area.
  • The Beach – Public access is located at the Old Coast Guard Station.