Is there an ideal time to attend?
Although we are called Engaged Encounter, a couple does not need to actually be engaged to attend a weekend. We recommend the “earlier the better.” As soon as you are engaged, or even considering engagement, it is the right time to attend a weekend. By attending early, you can discover areas of growth necessary in your relationship, determine if engagement and marriage is right for you (before becoming too invested in the wedding preparations), and avoid the last minute hassles of attending a weekend while trying to do everything else your wedding day entails.
Do we have to be Catholic?
Although the weekends are designed for couples planning to be married in the Catholic Church, they are open to couples from differing faith backgrounds and is based on the Catholic belief that marriage is between a man and a woman. Catholic Engaged Encounter has been found to be both beneficial and supportive of couples from differing faiths.
What does the weekend cost?
Stockton Catholic Engaged Encounter weekends cost $175.00 per couple. Couples must pay prior to the weekend to ensure their spot is secured. Weekend costs include meals and materials. Should you need to cancel or reschedule your weekend, please do so as early as possible. Please see our cancellation and rescheduling policies further down on this page.
Where do we stay?
We provide a ‘commuter’ retreat and do not include accommodations. Should you need hotel accommodations, we are more than happy to provide you with a list of hotels within the area; however, hotel fees are not included in the registration fees and will be your responsibility to reserve and pay for.
What happens on the weekend?
Catholic Engaged Encounter retreats provide private one-on-one time for the couple to learn about each other and marriage based on five major themes: The Family we Grew Up In, Sacramental Marriage, Communications, Intimacy - more than just sex, and Values. Couples learn about these five major themes through a series of presentations given by married couples. After each talk, both fiancés have time to reflect and write on the topic covered individually. Couples then are given time to reflect as a couple privately. Couples are never required to share with the group. The retreat is not group therapy.
Each couple will receive two workbooks to use throughout the retreat. These are yours to keep. The workbook provides an outline of the retreat and topics covered. Due to varying factors, such as meal times, slight differences in presenters length on topics, we are unable to provide exact timing of each presentation. Most presentations, individual reflection, and couple reflection time are approximately 60-90 minutes in total length.
What should we bring to the weekend?
Please be sure to bring the following items with you:
- Comfortable casual clothing
- A snack to place on the shared snack table which will be available in the conference room (water, soda, coffee provided)
- Any snack or drink items for your own personal consumption
What time should we arrive?
Please arrive by 8:00 AM on Saturday. Because we are on a tight schedule, we cannot wait for couples who arrive late. If there is an emergency and you must be late, call our reservation couple at (209) 505-9005.
What time does the weekend end?
Saturday evening ends as late at 10 p.m., please plan accordingly. The weekend typically ends as late as 4 pm on Sunday. In special or unusual circumstances, our schedule may change, but the weekend should still run no later than 10 p.m. on Saturday and 4 pm. on Sunday.
Do we have to stay for the entire weekend?
YES, it is very important that you stay for the entire weekend. If you arrive late or leave early, you will miss important parts of the weekend experience, and we will not be able to give you your weekend certificate verifying your attendance.
Are there any ground rules for the weekend?
- Yes, we do ask that you observe a few basic rules.
- Please refrain from the use of alcohol and illegal drugs.
- Please respect this is a Catholic retreat – we ask that you dress appropriately.
- Please remember the weekend is presented at a Catholic Church and be respectful of your surroundings.
- Please do not leave the weekend, for any reason, unless an emergency arises. If you need to leave, please speak to one of the team members.
Will breakfast be served on Saturday morning?
Yes, we provide continental breakfast with coffee, pastries, fruit, cheese, and bread. Once you arrive at the facility, you will be invited to enjoy breakfast. We will also provide lunch, and dinner on Saturday. On Sunday, two meals (breakfast and lunch) will be served.
Can you accommodate my special diet needs?
Our caterer will do their best to accommodate your needs. If you have special dietary needs, contact the Registration couple as soon as possible and we will do our best to accommodate you.
What should we wear?
Dress for the entire weekend is casual. Please dress comfortably. We will attend mass during the weekend, however casual attire is acceptable.
Where can I smoke?
All of our facilities prohibit smoking. You may, however, smoke in the designated area outside of the building.
Will we have much free time this weekend?
No, the weekend is designed to be intense so that you can spend as much concentrated time together as possible preparing for your marriage. You may find that we stay up later and get up earlier than you typically would on a weekend. Time permitting; we will have a break on Saturday afternoon; however, we ask that you not leave the facility.
What is your cancellation policy?
If you are unable to attend a weekend for which you have registered, please notify us as early as possible. If you notify us 30 days in advance, we may charge a small processing fee. If you notify us less than 14 days in advance, then we may be able to offer a refund of up to $75. If you cancel less than 7 days in advance, we may not be able to offer a refund. We apologize for any inconvenience. Please call our registration team at (209) 505-9005 to discuss your situation.
What is your reschedule policy?
If you are seeking to reschedule the weekend for which you have registered, please notify us as early as possible. Due to catering and facility rental agreements, in most cases we are unable to process reschedule requests less 14 days in advance. We apologize for any inconvenience. Please call our registration team at (209) 505-9005 to discuss your situation.