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Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to Common Questions & Concerns

Following are answers to the most common questions and concerns we receive from retreatants. Should you not find the answer to your specific question below, please contact us and we will connect you to the answers you need.

Can I come alone on a retreat?

Yes, you are welcome to join a retreat group by yourself at Malvern Retreat House. Whether you are an annual retreatant or a newcomer, you’ll be surrounded by other individuals who want a similar retreat experience, as well. If you are a new retreatant participating in one of our traditional retreats, there is a special orientation for you at the retreat. 

What does a “traditional retreat” mean?

A “traditional retreat” is an annual retreat group that is classified as a “Men of Malvern” or “Women of Malvern” retreat. They are time-honored weekend Catholic retreats for men or women starting on Friday evening and concluding on Sunday morning, or retreats that occur over the span of three days during the week.

What is the structure of a traditional retreat?

During our traditional Men of Malvern and Women of Malvern weekend retreats, the schedule is set, starting with 5 p.m. check-in on Friday and closing with Mass at 11 a.m. on Sunday. The retreat includes Retreat Director conferences/talks, Eucharistic liturgies, private Adoration in one of our oratories, Reconciliation, Saturday afternoon discussions (optional), Q&A and quiet time for reflection. If you attend one of our thematic retreats, the schedule may vary, but contains many similar elements to traditional retreats, such as prayer, meditation, discussion and Eucharistic liturgies. The typical schedule for a traditional retreat can be found here. 

What does it mean to be a “Man of Malvern” or a “Woman of Malvern?”

Being a “Man of Malvern” or “Woman of Malvern” means that you experience spiritual retreats, but as a member, you are also encouraged to bring a friend to share the continual rewards of the retreat experience at Malvern.

Is it mandatory to be Catholic to attend a retreat, conference, or meeting?

No, you do not have to be Catholic in order to experience Malvern Retreat House’s retreats, conferences, or meetings. Even though we are a Catholic retreat house, we also offer the guidance and comfort to other Christians and Christian denominations seeking to utilize the prayerful environment and facilities for their ministries. We welcome any who seek spiritual guidance.

I’m considering attending a traditional retreat for the first time. How can I figure out which group may suit my needs and personality?

There are many ways you can discover which traditional retreat group is best for you! You can call our main line at 610-644-0400 and one of our staff members will assist you with information about our retreat groups.

If my group, family, parish or organization wants to book a retreat, meeting or conference, is there a minimum and maximum number of individuals we can bring?

Regardless of the size of your group, we will work with you to plan a retreat, meeting, or conference that meets your needs and budget. To learn more details about planning a retreat, conference, or meeting, click on the “Retreat & Event Planners” tab on our website. We are able to provide overnight accommodations for 400+ people. In our Main Retreat Houses, we offer 300+ single rooms. In our McShain-Horstmann Family Life Center, we offer 50 double-occupancy air-conditioned rooms with private bathrooms for individuals, families and couples. Our conference facilities can accommodate up to 350 people, and include multiple breakout rooms for larger and smaller groups.

Is Wi-Fi available at Malvern Retreat House?

Yes, Wi-Fi is available in public areas on our grounds. We encourage groups to use the WiFi for presentations, conferences, or meetings (if needed), but also encourage retreatants to refrain from using electronic devices, so they can receive the best possible experience for spiritual reflection and growth on retreat.

How do I register for a retreat?

To register for a retreat, you may call our main office number at 610-644-0400, or register online by finding your retreat in our Calendar.

How much does a traditional retreat cost?

The costs of traditional retreats can vary. For the most up-to-date information, view our Calendar and navigate to a particular retreat to view its cost.

How can I submit payment for my retreat?

You can submit payment for a retreat in varius ways including by credit card online, check, venmo or cash. We accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit cards.

What is Malvern Retreat House’s Refund Policy?

Malvern Sponsored Retreats and Thematic/Private Individuals incur a $50 Administrative fee charged for all cancellations. Our refund policy is described below:

  • If cancellation occurs more than 48 hours before an event, we will refund 100% of the balance after the $50 administrative fee.
  • If cancellation occurs less than 48 hours prior to event, we will refund 50% of the payment.*48-hours means a full 2 days prior to the day that the retreat is to begin.  For example, for a retreat that begins on a Friday evening, the 48-hour period begins at 12:01 am on the Wednesday before the retreat.  

What does a typical retreatant bedroom look like?

St. Joseph’s, Our Lady’s and Corrigan Halls offer clean and comfortable rooms for retreatants to stay in overnight. They include a single bed, sink, mirror, desk, chair, clothes rack, towels, and lighting, so that each individual can enjoy a comfortable night’s sleep and peaceful, personal reflection. In our McShain-Horstmann Family Life Center, there is a double and single bed with private bathrooms and air-conditioning for individuals, families and couples. These rooms also include a mirror, desk, chair, clothes rack, towels and lighting.

Do any of the bedrooms have air conditioning?

Our bedrooms in the McShain-Horstmann Family Life Center provide air conditioning. Bedrooms in St. Joseph’s Hall, Our Lady’s Hall and Corrigan Hall currently do not have air conditioning. Common areas within all buildings do provide air conditioning. Some window AC units are available for those with medical needs, upon request.

Is Malvern Retreat House handicapped-accessible?

Yes, Malvern Retreat House is handicapped-accessible. Our paved woodland paths also provide the opportunity for all people to explore our grounds. Our McShain-Horstmann Family Life Center allows all individuals to move freely throughout the building, and stay overnight in handicapped-accessible rooms. Additionally, our Main Retreat House has handicapped-accessible rooms for retreatants to stay overnight comfortably.

What items should I bring on retreat? (linens, hygiene products, towels, etc.)

Within all of our retreatant rooms, we supply sheets, one blanket and one pillow with its own pillowcase, and a set of towels for your hands and showering. Toilet paper, soap and paper towels are provided for the communal and private bathrooms. Regarding other personal items, the retreatant is responsible to bring their own items, such as any extra blankets, pillows, shampoo, hygiene products, etc. Also, please be advised of the weather forecast before your arrival at Malvern Retreat House.

Does Malvern Retreat House have a dress code?

Please dress comfortably. Liturgies in the chapels, along with your participation in private Adoration, reflect a need to dress respectfully (business casual i.e.:  collared shirts for men, khakis, etc.). Please remember to bring comfortable walking shoes if you intend to explore our woodland paths. Shoes must be worn when indoors. The wearing of tank tops or any clothing with political party references, candidates, politicians, politically related themes, or social causes are strictly

Does Malvern Retreat House serve breakfast, lunch and dinner?

Yes, Malvern Retreat House serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert. We provide delicious food for all guests. Our food choices run the gamut: chicken, salad, soup, rice, pasta, sandwiches, hamburgers, french fries, ice cream and pie, among other foods.

I have a food allergy or dietary restrictions/need. How and when do I communicate this?

We are more than happy to accommodate your needs. If you have a food allergy, or some sort of dietary restriction/need, please let us know during registration by entering that information when registering online, or by calling 610-644-0400. Communicating this information ahead of time will allow our kitchen staff to prepare your food properly when you are on retreat. If you forget to inform us of your food allergy or dietary restriction/need before your retreat arrival, please let a kitchen staff worker or server know these details as soon as you enter the Dining Hall.

Where can I find directions to get to Malvern Retreat House?

We are located at 315 S. Warren Avenue, Malvern, PA 19355. To view Malvern Retreat House’s location using Google Maps, please reference our Find Us / Directions page. You can also call 610-644-0400 to clarify any questions about our location.

Is Malvern Retreat House easily accessible by public transportation?

Yes. To travel locally by train, take SEPTA’s Paoli/Thorndale line to Malvern. Once you arrive at Malvern’s stop and exit the train, walk up Warren Avenue (approximately 10 minutes) to Malvern Retreat House on your left. To map your route and determine train times, visit SEPTA’s website to use their “Trip Planner.”

For Amtrak information, visit their website or call (800) 872-7245. For travel by SEPTA bus, take the 92 bus from King of Prussia/West Chester, and get off at the intersection of Warren Avenue and King Street. Walk up Warren Avenue (approximately 10 minutes) to Malvern Retreat House on your left.

Where can I find parking on Malvern Retreat House’s grounds?

Once you drive onto Malvern Retreat House’s grounds, signs will direct you to our parking lots, which are located at the McShain-Horstmann Family Life Center, Our Lady’s Hall, St. Joseph’s Hall, and Corrigan Hall.

Am I allowed to take a tour of Malvern Retreat House before attending a retreat, meeting, or conference?

Yes, you are most welcome to take a tour of Malvern Retreat House before attending your retreat, meeting, or conference! Please call ahead to schedule an appointment for a guided tour. Call our main number at 610-644-0400 to arrange a guided tour.

When is Malvern Retreat House open? What about holidays?

Malvern Retreat House offices are open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and staff is on hand for retreats are held through out the week including weekends.  We are closed on the following holidays throughout the year (although we can often accommodate private groups for retreats over a holiday. Call the main number to inquire):New Year’s Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day (observed), Independence Day, the day after Independence Day (depending on which day of the week 4th of July occurs), Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, the day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas and New Year’s Eve.

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