Confirmation Retreat: March 1st - 3rd, 2024

At camp we know that confirmation is an important step in one's life of faith, so each year we offer our Confirmation Retreat, open to all PC(USA) confirmands and their mentors. This retreat focuses on building strong bonds between youth and their mentors, as well as helping confirmands learn the tools they will need on a lifelong journey of faith.

Each year youth gather together at Pyoca from across Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio to participate in keynotes and worship each day, meet new friends through small group sessions, and have plenty of time to explore all that camp has to offer.

Registration Portal

Registration for this event is now closed. To learn more, see information below.

Rev. Sammie Smith Bio Pic
KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Rev. Sammie Smith
We're thrilled to welcome Rev. Sammie Smith as this year's keynote speaker! Sammie serves as a hospital chaplain at Deaconess Hospital. She is a camper and staff alumna of Pyoca, and is also an alumna of PCUSA’s Young Adult Volunteer Program (Asheville '16-'17). She holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Indiana State University and a Master of Divinity from Vanderbilt Divinity School. She is an avid rock climber, home cook, and lives in Evansville, Indiana with her wife, Hazel, and beloved cats Kiwi and Sundae.

Our theme comes from PC(USA)'s Matthew 25 curriculum Commissioned to Change the World. We will explore the themes around Matthew 25 and learn how youth are called to serve God and the world.

An excerpt from curriculum author Mark D. Hinds, Ed.D.:
"Imagine Matthew 25:31-40 as a confirmation service. As the nations present themselves before the throne, there is no creed, no profession of faith, no examination of their intellectual grasp of the Bible or church history and no declaration of church membership. The sheep, unaware of having done anything special, are invited to 'inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world' (Matthew 25:34). 'Inheritance' implies a familial relationship; they already belong. Belonging has somehow resulted in behavior that reflects God's character: 'The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness' (Exodus 34:6).

Confirmation in the Matthew 25 congregation focuses on the church's affirmation of the teenager as the beloved child of God in baptism and the community's covenant embrace through the laying on of hands. Confirmation also confers a priestly vocation through the anointing with oil. We are God's image-bearing stewards of the goodness and beauty of creation, empowered by the Spirit's gifts of grace: 'the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord,' the spirit of joy in God's presence (Isaiah 11:2-3a)."

Mark expands upon his understanding of confirmation and the Matthew 25 church in a recent article written for The Presbyterian Outlook. Click here to read the article.


The Confirmation Retreat pricing structure is all-inclusive, with meals, lodging, and activities included.

  • Youth: $170; includes two nights of lodging, four meals, snacks, and all program activities.
  • Adult: $170; includes two nights of lodging, four meals, snacks, and all program activities.

This retreat is open to youth in grades 6 - 12. Youth are accompanied by adult chaperones from their church or youth group (1 adult per 7 youth). You are welcome to share chaperones with another church if needed! Youth without a church youth group are more than welcome to attend and will be connected with other youth and adult chaperones from their region. Additional supervision and activity facilitation will be provided by Pyoca staff.

All participants, both youth and adults, will register individually through our online registration portal. Churches covering the cost of their youth's registration fees are asked to notify Pyoca in advance for appropriate invoicing (this includes a $30.00 deposit per participant). Please email program@pyoca.org for church payment information.

Registration Portal

Registration is now closed. If you need assistance with or have questions regarding registration, please let us know!

We accept online payment via debit/credit card and e-check. Churches can also send a check in the mail for their registration fees. Online options are as follows:

  • Pay the $30.00 deposit and log back into your account later to pay remaining fees,
  • Pay the registration fees in full,
  • Select the "Small Group Leader" option if you are volunteering to serve in this capacity at the retreat (fees are covered by camp and no immediate payment is due). Open to one adult leader per group. Volunteers will be contacted by the Pyoca office and a discount code will be applied to your fees.
  • Choose the "Church Payment" option and no fees are immediately due. Pyoca will invoice your congregation.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have. Please contact our office at (812) 358-3413 or program@pyoca.org.