The story of Rivendell is one of generosity and faithfulness to vision
The property on the top of Cates Hill was obtained by Wolfgang Duntz, a developer on Bowen Island. With foresight and integrity, he knew that the land was not for private hands, and in the zoning process reserved it for a retreat centre. With a sense of faith, he prepared to gift the land and waited to see how that might come about.
Howard and Shirley Bentall, a couple who spent their lives in Christian service, were also waiting and listening for how they might use the financial resources that had come into their hands.
The 3 of them met in January of 2001. Around that time, Shirley gave Wolfgang a hand drawn floor plan of a retreat center along with her vision. The builder, Dennis Dallas – worked with the sketch and 18 months later, on June 3, 2002 the doors of Rivendell Retreat were opened.
Wolfgang often says that the timing was perfect for the creation of Rivendell in light of the development on Bowen. In addition the cooperative spirit of the workmen who built the lodge can be sensed in the beautiful workmanship of the building.
A small group of people came together during the building phase to envision the ongoing life of the retreat. The group was intentionally selected to include a variety of denominational backgrounds and experience. As principles were identified and models of functioning discussed – a vision unfolded of a way of being that would embody hospitality and accessibility.
The creation of Rivendell Retreat Centre was truly an experience of being Spirit led. As we look back on the unfolding, we witness the timing, the envisioning process and the building with a sense of awe.