Divine Mercies Retreat Group for Recovery People

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VINELAND — The sixth annual recovery spiritual retreat of the Divine Mercies Recovery Retreat Group will be held April 5-7 at the Pope John Paul II Retreat Center.

According to Deacon Kevin Laughlin of the Camden Diocese — co-director of the retreat with Kevin Murphy of the Diocese of Trenton — the mission of the program, designed for men and women in recovery, is to provide a spiritual retreat with Catholic worship services and sacraments. The sacrament of reconciliation will be offered during the weekend, along with group meetings.

According to Marty Perrotta, one of the promoters of the retreat, about 30 people are expected to attend the weekend, almost four times as many participants as the previous year.

The original retreat was in the St. Pius X Spiritual Life Center in Blackwood and was for people recovering from alcohol abuse and drugs.  Today the retreat focuses on alcohol.

The retreat house has 25 rooms, Perrotta explained, and it could fit up to 50 people if you have two to a room. But some people want private rooms. “We already have 10 who have asked for private accommodations,” Perrotta added.

St. John Paul II Retreat House “is a small intimate venue and perfect for us,” he said. “Some people coming had gone to St. Joseph’s in the Hills in Malvern, Pa., that can hold up to 300 people at a time and sponsor as many as 10 retreats a year for alcoholics.”

But a lot of people prefer “our smaller retreat house with its individual attention,” he added.

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