A place where the seed can be nourished towards full maturity
Genesis is a retreat and conference center offering hospitality to persons of all faiths, cultures and lifestyles. Its retreat and spiritual and wellness programs are designed to foster holistic integration of body, mind and spirit, and to encourage care and concern for the environment. Sabbatical stays and private spiritual direction are also available to Genesis guests.
Founded by Sister Elizabeth Oleksak in the name of the Sisters of Providence, Genesis is situated on the grounds of the former Crane Estate in Westfield, Mass. The Sisters used the property as a novitiate in 1929, and by 1932 for Holy Child Guild, their ministry for unwed mothers. In 1975 they started converting the property into a spiritual life center and formally opened it as such in 1976. Its administration building has office space, a chapel, dining and meeting rooms and a separate two-floor wing with overnight guest accommodations.
Restoring historic Carriage House
Fourteen years later, the property’s 7,000-square-foot Carriage House underwent an extensive restoration resulting in Genesis adding meeting and conference room spaces on its main floor and art space, a small ecology library, and a meditation room on the second floor.
Outside, Genesis is lined by a wall of tall pine trees, and its expansive front lawn showcases a collection of commemorative plants including ornamental trees, shrubbery and flower gardens. Of special note on the property is the Providence Arboretum with its 400 specimens of woody plants.
The surroundings of flowerbeds, community vegetable gardens, a labyrinth, and walking paths all lend themselves to an atmosphere of peace and serenity—all helping to make Genesis the very special place it is.