An Early Vespers Service in the lower yards at Olmsted
Olmsted Manor Retreat Center has been
operating since 1969, when the family of George W. Olmsted
donated their family estate to the Western Pennsylvania
Conference of the United Methodist Church.
The Olmsted family began negotiations to transfer the estate
to the Western Pennsylvania Annual Conference of the United
Methodist Church in 1968. On November 1, 1969, Bishop
Roy C. Nichols dedicated Olmsted Manor as an Adult Retreat and
Four directors have served since the dedication. The
Rev. Herbert E. Boyd was appointed the first resident
director. Under his guidance and personal care, the
property was returned to a place of activity and beauty.
In June of 1976, the Rev. James M. Legro was appointed
executive director and given broad responsibilities for
On October 2, 1976, the
dedication of Groves Lodge took place, providing modern
accommodations and dining facilities.
Rev. John Miller served as the director from 1979 to 2001 and
was instrumental in the expansion of the facilities with the
construction of Hickman Hall, the director's residence and
redecoration of the Manor House. An addition to Groves
Lodge, designed for accessibility, was completed in
1997. Many programs and events were instituted during
Rev. Miller's leadership. A labyrinth has been
constructed on the lower grounds in honor of Rev. Miller and
his many years of service to Olmsted Manor.
Jody Larson currently serves as Executive Director of Olmsted
Manor. He has been involved in the workings of Olmsted
Manor since 1979, and has overseen much of the new
construction and grounds restoration of the retreat center.
The staff and board of Olmsted Manor seek to fulfill our
vision: to provide Christian hospitality in a hostile
world. As people pass through the Olmsted gates, our
guests find a sense of refuge as they seek to renew their