It is with great sorrow that El Tesoro de los Angeles Retreat Center announces the passing into glory of our beloved founder Mary Guenzel.


She passed away peacefully in her sleep on Feb. 28, 2017.  She will be remembered for her great humor, tremendous love and extraordinary faith.  Mary’s accomplishments and interests were widespread and her impact on Teller County will not soon be forgotten.

In addition to founding El Tesoro, Mary at various times owned The Donut Mill, was the first to import Blue Bell Ice Cream from Texas for The Ice Cream Parlor and developed her own special coffee named “Mary’s Mountain Blend.”  Through the years she was an active member of Our Lady of the Woods Catholic Church in Woodland Park, St. Mary’s Catholic Cathedral and St. Joseph Catholic Church in Colorado Springs.  We continue, as always, dedicated to serving the mission of El Tesoro she began in 2003.  Mary leaves a lasting legacy by her endowment to the Nuestra Senora de la Paz Foundation which will continue the mission of El Tesoro in perpetuity.

Full obituary available here.

Only fear the LORD, and serve him faithfully with all your heart, for consider what great things he has done for you. 1 Samuel 12:24

Mary Alice Wilson Guenzel
April 29, 1926 - February 28, 2017

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Mary's honor in support of the ongoing mission of El Tesoro de los Angeles.

As a response to a divine call, Mary W. Guenzel's mission is to provide a place of respite for those seeking a break from the noise and haste of the world and to reconnect with God. Here on 70 acres amid the Pike National Forest, she has established a retreat center for parish groups, community church organizations, and individuals. Mary’s gift provides retreatants a home-like atmosphere in Annunciation Hall and Visitation Hall & Conference Room, and she has designed Seraphim Hermitages especially for individual and group silent retreats. Casa Jose is a specially appointed and home-like facility offering a quiet atmosphere for 1-2 individuals or couples. The beautifully designed chapel, San Francisco Javier Oratory, was blessed and dedicated by Bishop Michael Sheridan of Colorado Springs.

Our Founder

Mary Wilson Guenzel

Our Facilities

Whether you are here for an individual or group retreat or a conference El Tesoro has the facility for you.

3-Minute Retreat

Take a quick break with a 3-minute retreat from Loyola Press!

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