2024 Retreats Include Spiritual Wellness Days, European Pilgrimages, Traditional Offerings

The Saint Vincent Archabbey Retreat Program has released its schedule of retreats for 2024. The schedule, with new and expanded offerings, includes a four-part one-day series on spiritual wellness, with the theme of anger; four three-day weekend retreats at the Archabbey; one four-day weekend retreat for men at Raccoon Creek State Park and two international pilgrimages, one to walk the Camino to Santiago de Compostela in Spain and the other to follow in the footsteps of Saint Patrick in Ireland. Additional details and registration options are on the program’s website at


Brother Mark Floreanini, O.S.B., professor of studio art at Saint Vincent College, and Father Philip Kanfush, O.S.B., professor in the Education Department and author of Renewed Each Morning, will lead the first weekend retreat June 7-9, 2024, entitled “Tap into the Canvas of Your Soul Through Painting.” Brother Mark will lead the painting component of the retreat while Father Philip will deliver reflections. No painting experience is required to attend.

Mimike Garesche, a popular retreat designer and spiritual guide, will offer the June 14-16 retreat for women entitled “You Are Loved: Experiences of Prayer.” This retreat will offer group lectio divina, small group discussion and journaling in an effort to assist retreatants in engaging in focusing prayer that supports a personal encounter with God.

Brother Elliott Maloney, O.S.B., professor of New Testament and biblical languages at Saint Vincent Seminary, will offer a retreat for men June 28-30 entitled “Finding the Joy and Peace of God in Our Lives.” Retreatants will explore the attitudes of a Christian related to topics such as justification and holiness as well as the end/goal of life are intimately connected with daily life.

Father Jude Brady, O.S.B., will lead the July 19-21 retreat entitled “Holiness and Wholeness.” Father Jude is director of pastoral formation at Saint Vincent Seminary. Retreatants will study the Little Rule for Beginners and attempt to apply to daily life, seeking transformation into a new creation in the image and likeness of the Risen Christ.


Father Shawn Anderson, O.S.B., director of the Archabbey Retreat Program, and Brother Gilbert Heater, O.S.B., a seminarian, will lead a retreat August 2-5 at Raccoon Creek State Park entitled “Beyond These Four Walls—Experiencing God in the Books of Scripture and Nature.” The retreat will offer opportunities for prayer, small group discussions and fellowship. Periods of lectio divina will be followed by meditative hikes along trails in the park.


The four one-day spiritual wellness retreats will take place on Saturdays at the Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve.

Father Francois Diouf, O.S.B., will lead off the series on April 27 with “Am I Right? What Makes Us Mad!” They day will include reflection, discussion and integration of insights from psychology and monastic spirituality to help process anger.

Father Edward Mazich, O.S.B., rector of Saint Vincent Seminary, will facilitate the July 13 session entitled “What Made Jesus Angry?” He will compare instances of Jesus’ ire to how he treated those who sinned, were cast aside, who hurt him and who were ignorant, ending with how participants can be more like Jesus.

Father Paul O’Connor, S.J., a Jesuit priest and direction of Mission and Identity at the Jesuit Retreat Center in Cleveland, will speak about “The Power of Affectivity: Ingatian Perspectives on Anger, Emotions and Encountering God.” The October 5 session will draw upon the wisdom of Saint Ignatius of Loyola to provide a framework within which attendees can identify the movements of anger within the heart and re-frame them as doorways to a deeper encounter with God.

Father Justin Matro, O.S.B., pastor of Saint Bartholomew Parish, Crabtree, and assistant professor of spiritual theology at Saint Vincent Seminary, will lead the final session, “Quenching the Thirst of Anger from the Oases of Wisdom of the Desert Fathers.” The date for the final session is still being determined. The wisdom of the monastic desert fathers will be drawn upon to help participants along the pathways to peace in an increasingly angry and divisive culture. Father Justin poses the question, “Does civility mean weakness, or is it a strength?”


The Camino to Santiago de Compostela trip will be led by Retreat Program Director Father Shawn Anderson May 15-26. The pilgrimate route traverses northern Spain, finding its ultimate end at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. Tradition holds that the apostle James traveled to Spain to share the Gospel and is buried at the cathedral site. For hundreds of years, people from all walks of life have been making their journey along El Camino (“The Way”) to pray, reflect, and renew a commitment to journeying daily with Christ.

Father Philip Kanfush, O.S.B., professor in the Education Department at Saint Vincent College, and author of Renewed Each Morning, will help guide participants along the “Footsteps of Saint Patrick.” This Irish retreat includes the former friary at the Hill of Slane, the grave of Saint Patrick at Down Cathedral, and Lough Derg, the Sanctuary of Saint Patrick.  Participants will also visit the famous Marian Shrine in Knock, the Cliffs of Moher, Kylemore Abbey in Connemara, and have an opportunity to literally follow in Patrick’s footsteps in a climb up Croag Patrick. The trip will take place July 22-29, 2024 and is being run in conjunction with Verso Ministeries.

Additional information and links to online registration is on

The complete schedule and trip information is available at this link: