Fire Safety and Security


1. Do not hesitate to call 911 in an emergency. There is a landline in the office (southwest side of the lower level off the  passageway). Our address is:

            St. Mary's Retreat House

            14230 Main St.

            Lemont, IL 60513


2. The house landline telephone number is: 630-257-5102

            After calling 911, call Deacon John P. Vidmar, 708-204-4390

                                                 Deacon Josep Winblad, 312-833-9170

3. Fire extinguishers are available in all the hallways, the front lobby and rear lobby (former kitchen).


4. Smoke detectors are very sensitive. Candles and smoking will set them off. Candles and smoking are prohibited in the building. Cooking is prohibited. Food can be warmed up in the microwaves located in the kitchen. The electric stove in the rear lobby is for staff use during the week.

5. The alarms cannot be turned off after they are sounded. Wait for the firemen from the Lemont Fire Department to arrive to turn the alarm off. The smoke detector alarm system is in its own panel is in the electrical room in the southwest lower hallway at the back of the building. The Lemont Fire Department has keys located in a lock box on the porch to get into the building.

6. The breaker for the Alarm System is in the electrical box in the rear lobby (former kitchen).

7. The smoke detector and the alarm panel are located in the electrical supply room which is the last room on the northwest side of the house. They are not to be touched. The fire department will reset the alarm system.

8. The fire hoses that are still mounted in a few places are obsolete.  The hoses have been removed on the first floor and will be removed on the second floor. Do not turn them on.

9. The building has the following exits:

            North side front

            Southside east hallway

            Southside west hallway

            Southside Kitchen doors

            Upper level southeast side staircase to the outside (Doors are not alarmed)

            Upper level southwest side staircase to the outside (Doors are not alarmed)

            Upper level northeast side staircase leading to the lobby

            Upper level northwest side staircase leading to the lobby

10.  The front left (from the inside facing out) door can be set to stay open by flipping the panic bar retainer. The button on the bottom side releases it. Do not open the right (east) side front door. It is normally bolted shut at the top. Panic bar retainers are installed on all the other exterior doors on the main floor.

11.  The doors should be locked at the end of the day's events when everyone goes to sleep. That time is set by the facilitator.  The front door (as well as the hallway doors and the doors at the bottom of the steps leading to the second floor on the south side of the builiding) has a bar on to keep it in the unlocked position. That is released by pressing a button on the bottom side of the bar. the back door can be locked by turning the knob on the lock from the inside.

12. There is a door to the boiler room in the Electrical Room. it is not locked for access issues. There is no reason to go in that room. Please stay out for the safety of all.

13.  There are basic first aid supplies in the north east side dining room cabinets. 

14. There is a portable Philips Hearstart defibrillator stored on the front wall of the dining room leading to the east side door to the kitchen. There is a voice recording to lead you through its usage.


There are five landline telephones located in the building:

            Reception Desk

            Front of Dining Room


            Upstairs north library

            Upstairs south library


1. Meals are all catered by an outside caterer. There is no serving staff. The caterer will bring the food in from the back parking lot and set it on the tables at the front of the dining room. Serving is buffet style.

2. If extra serving utensils are needed, there are some extra in the west dining room cabinets. Please do not throw away the serving utensils. Collect them and clean them in the kitchen sink and leave them out to dry.

3. There is no staff to clean up after meals. Assign someone from your party to collect the extra food at the end of meals and put it into the commercial refrigerator in the kitchen. At the end of your retreat, please take the food home. Any leftover food will be thrown out on Monday.

4. There are extra eating utensils in the cabinets in the front west end of the dining room.

New Mattresses

1. There are 27 new Tempur-pedic mattresses and 61 new Quality Sleep Shop Robby mattresses. The Tempur-pedic mattresses are between  14 and 14.5 inches in depth.  The Robby mattresses are 10” in depth with the top 3" having a gel to keep a person from sinking in as much as the Tempur-pedics.


3. Mattresses are not to be moved without permission. These mattresses are high end mattresses and can be damaged  by dragging then across the floor. If you move it, we assume you want to purchase it and replace it for us.


4. All rooms have new pillows as well as new blankets. Extra blankets are located on the garment hangers bolted to the wall. 



1. Paper towels, toilet paper, garbage bags of various sizes are located in the northeast  front dining room armoire. Cleaning soaps such as  Mr.  Clean  are all located in and on the metal cabinets located in the west side of the kitchen.


2. There is another cleaning supply cabinet outside the chapel on the second floor.


3. All light bulbs are LED and should not need replacement. We have no extra supply of LED light bulbs.  Please Report any light bulb that burns out.


4. Brooms are located in the storage areas under the southwest staircases of the building.


5. The southeast stair case has mops and cleaning buckets. These are the staircases at the back of the building. There is a mop and cleaning bucket in the upstairs east side women's bathroom.


6. There are extra paper plates, paper bowls  and napkins in the west storage cabinets in the front of the dining room. This cabinet also has extra plastic serving spoons, serving forks and serving tongs.


7. The northwest dining room cabinet has extra plastic forks, knives and spoons.


8.  Salt, pepper, tea, sugar, sugar free sweeteners are all located in the east side dining room cabinets.


9. Styrofoam and paper cups can be found in the drawers of the cabinet at the coffee station in the dining room.





The dining room walls have been drywalled and painted. Many of the bedrooms have been repainted. Nothing may be scotch taped or affixed to the walls.


Lighting & Outlets


1. Lighting is controlled by switches.  All the bedrooms have motion sensors that are manual on and auto off. They are set to turn off after 5 minutes of no movement. The 8 bathrooms have motion sensors that are auto on and off. In addition to this the sacristies of the chapel and the south library and meeting area have auto on and auto off motion sensors. there are no motion sensors on multiway switches and please turn these off.

2. The exception is the dining room middle set of lights are controlled by the breaker switches at the front southeast side of the dining hall. The bottom two breaker switches on the right are needed to turn on these lights.


3. Do not turn any other breaker switches off. They can disable the exit lights which have to be on at all times. It is also possible to disable the outlets and lights in the rooms if you turn off the wrong breaker.


4.  There are no replacements for any LED fixture.


5. The flood lights on the front of the building are on a shade sensors. The outside porch canned lights are on a switch and have to be manually turned off and on. the light switches are marked in the inside porch area.


6. Breaker boxes are located

            Main Floor: Utility room, the northwest end of the dining room,  southwest corner room

            Second Floor: Chapel, last room on the northwest side, southwest corner room


7.  All rooms have grounded 3 prong outlets. All of the rooms have a hotel style lamp that has 2 grounded outlets. Use this instead of the wall outlet. It is more accessible


8. The four doors on the back of the retreat house have flood lights that are manually controlled by a switch closest to the door over which the light is located. The exception is the flood light over the kitchen entrance. It has a motion sensor and comes on automatically. We have disabled that switch.


9.  If the chapel is used and you have to turn on the lights in the front of the chapel, there is an electrical panel in the west sacristy which controls all of these lights. This panel also controls many of the lights and outlets for the inside rooms so please be careful not to shut designated breakers. There is a sign under the panel box which identifies which breakers should never be turned off.


Lobby Furniture


1. That furniture is to be kept in the lobby and not moved. The couches have wheels on them to make it easier to clean given their weight. Moving the furniture scratches the wax floors. Please leave the furniture in place in the lobby.





1. There are fans stored in the storeroom under the east stair well in the dining room entrance.


2. Put the fans back near that door. We will store them.




1. There are 8 electrical portable heaters located in the dining room (2), north lounge (1), chapel (1), south conference room (1), lobby (1), upstairs north conference room (1), downstairs north conference room (1). If you move them return them. Do not plug two of these into the same circuit. They will blow the fuse. Each one is rated at 1500 watts. A few of  the fans have had the circuit board removed and are now controlled by switches. One switch has a position to open the louvers and the opposiste position to start oscillation. the other switch has a high heat/ high fan position and a low heat/lo fan position. return both switches to the middle position and disconnect from the wall outlet.e oscilaation and louver



1. The Retreat House is not used during the week. People coming in first on Friday will encounter cold showers. That is because the water in the hot water lines has cooled off. It takes running the water to bring new hot water from the hot water tank to the various places in the building. We have hundreds of feet of water piping and it can take awhile especially in the corners of the building before new hot water comes to the showers or sinks. We try to run the water on Friday afternoons if there is time.

2. The toilets have pressure tanks in them that lose pressure at times when not used. Usually hitting the handle restarts the pressurizing. You have to wait for the pressure to build. If it does not, report it. We will make sure they get re-pressurized. There is a toilet plunger in each bathroom.

3. The main water shut off for the building is located in the boiler room.

4. There is one outside faucet on the east side of the building. The shut off for it is in the lower east side women's bathroom. We leave it turned off on the inside. There is another on the south side of the building.

5. There is also an outside faucet on the outside kitchen wall (South side)

6. Sinks and toilets each have a shut off valve.

7. Water in the former kitchen has a shut off valve.

8. Shut off valve for the entire house is located in the boiler room.

Boiler Control

1. Each wing of the building (4) has its own circulating pump controlled by a switch. The chapel has its own circuit and own circulating pump.

3. There are thermostats that control each wing (east & west) and floor (lower & upper) as well as the chapel. These are set to about 68 degrees and there is a 5 degree variance from the south end the north end. The thermostats are on the north end so the south end will be warmer by as much as 5 degrees when  the boilers fire up.


3. There are cutoffs for the radiators for the lower west wing in rooms 111 & 112.


4. Please do not touch the thermostats.





1. There are no gas appliances in the Retreat House. All gas lines for the house have been capped and the shut off vales to lines supplying the former kitchen are in the off position.


2. There is a shut off valve for the boiler as well as the hot water tank. 


3. There is a separate shut off valve for the whole house in the boiler room.


Internet Wireless Access


            Modem router name: SMRH

            internet pswd             1234567890


Elevator / Lift (permit pending)

1.Is located at the back ground level entrance (south side of the building)

2. To open the elevator, press the Number for the level you are at.

3. To move the elevator, it is necessary to hold the button for the floor you wish to go to. Releasing the button stops the elevator.

4. This is  lift for the disabled. it is not technically an elevator.

5. Total load capacity is 750 pounds. That should accommodate a disabled person in a wheel chair, the wheel chair and a caretaker.

6. There is a mechanically release located in a locked box at the left front of the first floor door which will permit the lift to lower itself to the main floor and the door can be opened.

7. The light comes on automatically with a sensor.

8. The lift has a telephone number (630-xxx-xxxx) that can be used to call out.

9. In case of emergency, it rings at the Lemont Fire Department.







1. There is a designated area for campfires in the field up the hill on the far side of the bathrooms on the south perimeter of the Retreat House.


2. You may bring your own wood. At times we have scrap wood to burn. Please ask about this. You are also welcome to pick up lose branches on the ground to burn.


3. Please leave any stacked wood alone.  That is the property of people who have been doing tree trimming on the property. They use it for burning in their wood stoves and is not to be used for campfires.


4. Take a bucket of water with you to put out the fire at the end of an evening. Do not leave it unattended.



When You Leave


1. We do not have cleaning staff to strip the beds. Please strip the sheets from the beds and bring them to the dining room. Sort them on the west wall in piles according to the signs posted on the walls.

            top sheets

            fitted sheets 

            wash clothes


            pillow cases


2. The mattresses have mattress protectors. Please do not remove them.


3. Empty all the room garbage cans into the main garbage can for the floor.


4. Sweep all the floors


5. Empty all garbage cans into the dumpster located at the back (south) parking lot.


6. Close and lock all windows.


7. Shut off all the lights.


8. Check to make sure no faucets have been left running.


9. Check to make sure no toilets are running.

10. Check to make sure no water is running in any of the sinks.


11. You can lock the building by closing the front door, locking the back kitchen door from the inside and exiting either out the southeast or southwest back door.

12. Check to make sure the ventilator fans in the chapel are in the off position. This is the electrical box in the sacristy of the chapel.


13. The curtains on the windows should be pulled back.


14. Lock all the doors before you leave.

Mass Schedule for Local Churches


1. Saturday Mass is available at

            Franciscan Sisters Monastery next door

            Saturday:                     8am


            St. Patricks 

                        Saturday:         4:30 pm

                        Sunday:           7:30am, 10 am, 12:00 noon, 5 pm

            St. Alphonsus

                        Saturday:         7:30am, 5 pm

                        Sunday:           7 am, 8:30am, 10 am, 11:30 am

            St. Cyril

                        Saturday:         7 am, 5 pm

                        Sunday:           7:30am, 10:30am, 12 noon



            St. Mary's Monastery

                        Sunday:             7am

                                                11am in Slovenian

2. One month prior notice permits us to arrange a Mass on the premises.


3. The deacons can conduct prayer services. Since there are four parishes in our proximity that hold regular Masses, we do not conduct Communion services.


While You are Here


There are over 100 acres that include:





            Lourdes Grotto

            Way of the Cross

            Rosary Valley

            Franciscan Cemetery

            Bocce Ball Courts

            Monastery Chapel


            There is no fishing in the pond located by the Lourdes Grotto.


Please take the time to walk and meditate!