Covid-19 Update from the Bishop & Cabinet: Watching carefully the rise in COVID infection rates


November 19-21, 2021

Epworth By The Sea, St. Simons Island



Encounter is a weekend retreat designed for 6th - 12th grade students where everyone will ENCOUNTER God, and each in a very unique way. This retreat will offer passionate worship, relevant Bible study and a meaningful time with other teens at Epworth By The Sea on St. Simons Island.



These will be continually monitored and updated as we get closer to the event. All Encounter participants will be required to follow CDC guidelines at the time of the retreat. Masks may be required indoors. 



How it works: Registrations will be pending until full payment is received. Payment is required within 7 days of registering and $50 of the registration fee is non-refundable. Churches will register as a group and fill out individual camper's information within the same registration. Online payment is preferred; however, mailed church checks only (no personal checks) are acceptable. Make payable to "South GA Conference UMC" and mail to Encounter Youth Retreat, PO Box 7227, Macon, GA 31209. (Please specify that the money is for Encounter registration.)  Deadline is November 10, 2021. Click here to register.


Cost: $150 per person and includes meals, cabin lodging, insurance, tshirt and programming.


Church leaders: Click here if you need a form to hand out to gather your student's and chaperone's  information. This is not a registration form. Only online registration is accepted.


Refund Policy: Cancellation PRIOR to the deadline = Total refund less $50.00 (non-refundable deposit). Cancellation AFTER the deadline = No refund. Cancellation due to illness prior to retreat = Total refund less $50.00. Fees may be transferred to a NEW REPLACEMENT camper if the registrar is notified prior to the first day of the retreat.To make notice of cancellation or change after the deadline, you must contact the Connectional Ministries office at (912) 638-8626 and in writing to





  • Adult Leader Guide: Everything you want to know about the schedule, church time, free time and a few surprises! 
  • Devotions: One devotional booklet per person. These will be used both Saturday and Sunday mornings. 
  • Church Time:  Questions based on what is shared at each session. These questions will allow your group to dive deeper into the topics and share in a smaller group. 
  • Map of Epworth
  • Keys to your cabin
  • List of emergency numbers
  • Nametags & lanyards



Adult chaperones are provided by each church group attending.  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. Click here to download the Safe Sanctuaries form. Only one form per church group is needed and this can be turned in at registration or emailed ahead of time to



Participants at ENCOUNTER will be sleeping in the cabins at Epworth By The Sea.  All beds are twin size. Participants will need to bring their own bed linens and towels (see a recommended list of What to Pack). In most cases, multiple church groups will be assigned to each cabin.




5:30-7:00     Check-in @ Camp & Retreat Office

5:30-7:00     Supper line open

7:45              Youth Leaders Meeting @ Tabby House

8:15              Opening Worship (Strickland Auditorium)

9:30              Church Time   

10:30            In Cabins



7:00             Morning Fun Run (optional) 

7:30-8:30    Breakfast Line Open

8:30             Devos @ Brown Center

9:30             Worship ENCOUNTER 2 (Strickland)

10:45           Church Time

11:30           Cookout under the Oaks

12:30-2:30  Adult Leader Workshop pt 1

1:00-2:30    Break Out Groups (MS Girls, HS Girls, MS Boys, HS Boys)

2:30-5:00    Free Time - activities offered on site

5:30-6:45    Supper

7:00             Worship ENCOUNTER 3 (Strickland)

8:15             Church Time

9:00             Adult Leader Workshop pt 2

                     Late Night Fun TBD

11:00           In Cabins



7:00            Morning Fun Run (optional)

7:30-8:45   Breakfast line open

8:45            Pack up

9:00            Devos @ Brown Center

9:00            Adult Leader Workshop pt 3

10:15          Worship ENCOUNTER 4 (Strickland)

11:30          Lunch & Depart


Suzanne Akins

Director of Camping & Retreats

(912) 638-8626 ext. 107


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Conference Office

3040 Riverside Dr., Suite A-2 - Macon, GA 31210

PO Box 7227 - Macon, GA 31209

478-738-0048 | 800-535-4224

Administrative Office

3040 Riverside Dr., Suite A-2 - Macon, GA 31210

PO Box 7227 - Macon, GA 31209

478-738-0048 | 800-535-4224

Camping & Retreat Ministries

99 Arthur J. Moore Dr - St Simons Is., GA 31522

PO Box 20408 - St Simons Island, GA 31522

912-638-8626 | 888-266-7642

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Open hearts. Open minds. Open doors.