MultiFaith Storytelling Institute Annual Retreat: February 23-27, 2020

Event Highlights

  • 3 healthy meals a day
  • Morning, afternoon, and evening sessions that include:
  • Deeply ecumenical prayer to begin each morning (participants may volunteer to lead)
  • Learning how to identify, learn, and lift a folk tale from the written page
  • How to create stories inspired by sacred text
  • How to identify and create powerful personal stories
  • Massage (available for extra fee)
  • Tuesday evening excursion to Cuban restaurtant in famous Ybor district of Tampa, complete with flamenco performance!


9:15 After breakfast we begin our day with 15-20 minutes of deeply ecumenical spiritual practice, including song, poetry, prayer, and silence. Participants are welcome to lead.
9:30 ​We then immerse ourselves in learning stories and refining storytelling skills.
12pm Lunch is followed by sacred time, with time for you to walk the labyrinth, journal,
do homework, or take a nap.
3-5:30pm More learning, including giving indivudual attention to each students' work
6pm Dinner
7:15-8:30pm Evening program to delight the soul

About This Event

This retreat is a gathering of the 3rd cohort of MFSI. WE could not say it any better than one of our students:

"Mark and Renee lead you into an encounter with that mysterious side that reaches out beyond words. They lead you toward a discovery that those whispers of the sacred in the best of the old folktales and rabbinic literature are also found in the shape of our own personal stories. In the generous space that Mark and Renee create, we learn of all the many ways--sad, beautiful, humorous--that God finds us in our lives." - Jay, Vancouver Theological Seminary student

This work sent me to a powerful breakthrough in my storytelling abilities, to let the story live inside me, ​ and pour out effortlessly and joyously Storyteller - Kingston, NY

What's Included

  • All meals, instruction, room for 4 nights

What's Not Included

Airfare not included.
Participants need to arrive to and from the retreat center on their own. The Fransciscan Center is a short drive from the Tampa airport.
Evening group trip to Ybor City not included (except cost of Flamenco dance concert)

Venue Highlights

The Franciscan Center offers delicious healthy meals. In addition, the quiet meditative space includes:
A Labyrinth (Chartres Design) which is a tool for reflection and meditation
A Pavilion – an open air covered structure which is located next to the river and can accommodate 40-50 chairs for a group setting
Parking Lot adjacent to the main building is available for overnight stays.
Manicured Lawns with paths and benches which can be used for peaceful walks or private meditation.
A Screened Porch for reading, discussion, or resting.


Participants may choose 1 single room or double to share.


  • A/C in Rooms
  • Free Wifi
  • Towels
  • Free Parking
  • Coffee/Tea

Menu Types

  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Pescetarian
  • Organic
  • Gluten Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Nut Free

Cancellation Policy

100% deposit refund for cancellation 60+ days before event.
50% deposit refund for cancellation 30-59 days before event.
0% deposit refund for cancellation 0-29 days before event.
The remaining balance (total price minus deposit) is due 14 days before the retreat start date.
The remaining balance is non-refundable once paid.
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Why Retreat?

We asked people why they go on retreat, here's what they said:

Have been spending this year getting healthy and a retreat to relax and focus would be wonderful. Crocker

Retreat Guru's Vision

We believe human beings are innately wise, strong and kind. This wisdom, although not always experienced, is always present. Going on retreat is a beautiful way to reconnect to our basic sanity and health. Our aspiration at Retreat Guru is to inspire people to experience authentic retreats and reconnect with their innate wisdom, strength and kindness.

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