Our Vision

 

 

The pace of our society can be exhausting, making the need for spaces to withdraw increasingly crucial. We recognize this, as well as the scarcity of such environments in the Lowcountry, and are grateful to offer this stunning little corner of God's beauty for reflection, exploration and worship. Our aim at Wesley Gardens Retreat, a ministry of Wesley Monumental UMC, is to provide a place where groups and individuals can come away and find rest for their weary souls.

We believe Creation was intended for purposes of healing and re-creating, so take seriously our environmental stewardship and unspoiled property. We welcome any guests willing to respect our property and values. +

 

 
 

Our Staff
 

Micah Sprünger | Retreat Manager

micah@wesleygardensretreat.com | 912.441.7578

Micah & Abbie Sprünger are the caretakers of the property. They live a stone’s throw from the Main House with their three children, Elliana, Eden, and Aaliya. Micah was raised in a missionary family in Japan, studied history and art at Covenant College and moved to Savannah about fifteen years ago. He enjoys architecture & design, coffee roasting and photography. Abbie grew-up outside of Atlanta and studied religion at Emory University, and spiritual formation and soul care at Talbot Seminary. She’s a full-time mom and in her spare time, an author (new book just released). Micah & Abbie worship at Christ Church Anglican and you can catch glimpses into their days HERE.

 

Daphne Burrows | Reservations

daphne@wesleygardensretreat.com | 912.232.0191

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Daphne was a receptionist at Gulfstream Aerospace for almost 29 years before joining the staff of Wesley Monumental UMC. Daphne plays a key role at the Retreat by doing most of our booking and scheduling as well as being the receptionist at the Church. Seeing plans come together, whether for a retreat, meeting, or  reunion is a highlight of her role. Daphne is a wife and mother of three, grandmother of four, and great-grandmother to two.

 

Ken Hayse | Landscaping & Gardening

A native to Savannah, Ken spent 34 years with the Savannah Fire Department and on the side, owned and operated a landscaping business. He is married to his sweetheart, Diane, and together they have two children and four grandchildren. He enjoys hunting, fishing & traveling abroad (Rome is his favorite spot so far). When not cutting grass, or trimming bushes, Ken might be found retreating at the "little pavilion" (at the back of the Wesley Gardens property), enjoying the wind and trees and presence of God. He is a member of First Presbyterian Church of Pooler.

 

 

Our History

 

This 130-acre property was developed around 1920 as a prestigious southern estate called "Amony Marsh". In 1948, upon selling her Philadelphia mansion ("Guilford"), widowed multimillionaire Mrs. Samuel P. Rotan purchased Amony Marsh from Mr. and Mrs. Samuel E. Wolff and changed its name to "Folly Marsh". Under a spread of Live Oaks and tall Georgia pines, one would find manicured garden paths surrounded by one of the largest camellia collections in the Southeast. The property included a main house, several guest and servants cottages, a stable, poultry house, greenhouse, vineyard and produce gardens.

In 1962, Wesley Monumental UMC was graciously offered (and accepted) the property by Mrs. Rotan. Folly Marsh was renamed “Wesley Gardens” by Mrs. Albert Trulock. By the late 1980's, despite the congregation's best efforts, a lack of funding led the property to a point of disrepair. Beginning with a significant renovation to the Main House in 1994, the property has seen continued improvement since, recapturing much of its former beauty. In 2013, the name was expanded to "Wesley Gardens Retreat Center", broadening our vision to any seeking beauty and respite. +