There will be six retreats offered at Saint Vincent Archabbey this summer, announced Br. Hugh Lester, O.S.B., retreat director. There will be three and four-day retreats for men, a three-day womens’ retreat, a retreat for Benedictine Oblates, one for married couples and a charismatic retreat.
“The rising demands of contemporary life, and the nature and values of our secular society, have the combined effect of eroding our spiritual lives,” Br. Hugh said. “It becomes important then, to be aware of this effect and to respond by actively nurturing the spiritual life. A retreat can be a catalyst for spiritual renewal and for concentrating on God’s purpose for our earthly existence.”
The monks of Saint Vincent Archabbey have tended to the spiritual needs of Christian men and women for over one hundred fifty years and have been involved in retreat ministry since 1913. Their preached group retreats, given annually from May to July, have drawn thousands of retreatants to Saint Vincent over the years.
“Make Peace Before the Sun Goes Down: Anger, Forgiveness and Peace in Community” will be the retreat for Oblates of Saint Benedict and those interested in Benedictine spirituality, from May 16 to May 18. The Rule of Saint Benedict addresses many situations in community life involving disruption of peace and incitement to anger. This retreat will offer reflections from Sacred Scripture and the Rule on the struggle for peace in family and community through the forgiveness rooted in Christ’s self-emptying love. Retreat Master Fr. Donald Raila, O.S.B. is Director of Oblates and Director of Monastery Music.
“Responding to the Call to Holiness by the Example of St. Therese of Liseux,” is the women’s retreat, to be held from May 30 to June 1. This retreat will focus on the “Little Way” of Therese, which Pope Pius XI said is “a way of golden simplicity”. The “Little Way” provided her with a path to holiness that, as Albino Luciani, (later Pope John Paul I) noted, required courage, resolution, and willpower. Retreat Master is Fr. Jacques Daley, O.S.B., who has made many presentations on St. Therese on EWTN and teaches courses on her at Saint Vincent Seminary.
Br. Benedict Janecko, O.S.B., professor of Scripture at Saint Vincent Seminary and author of The Psalms: The Heartbeat of Life and Worship, will be Retreat Master for “Couples in Scripture,” the retreat for Married Couples, from June 13 to 15. Participants will reflect upon “Couples in Scripture”, beginning with Adam and Eve and ending with Mary and Joseph. They will reflect on the joys and sorrows of biblical couples, accenting the role of vocation (call) and prayer in their lives.
Fr. Thomas Acklin, O.S.B., who teaches courses in theology at Saint Vincent Seminary, will offer “Growing in Our Relationship with Christ,” for the three-day and four-day retreats for men. The three-day retreat will be from June 20 to 22 while the four-day will be from July 17 to 20. By the way we live and by growing in a life of prayer, we can enter more deeply into a personal relationship with Christ, Fr. Acklin noted. These days will provide opportunities to learn how to deepen our prayer and to practice what we are learning, as well as to prayerfully examine our lives.
“From Fragmentation to Wholeness” is the topic of the charismatic retreat, to be conducted by Br. Thomas Curry, who will be ordained to the priesthood on May 17. The charismatic retreat will run from June 27 to 29. This retreat will focus on three topics: self-acceptance; the enabling power of the Spirit in our lives; and reconciliation and the healing aspect of forgiveness.
For a free brochure or for more information on the Archabbey’s retreat program, contact Br. Hugh Lester, Retreat Director, Saint Vincent Archabbey, 300 Fraser Purchase Rd, Latrobe, PA 15650, 724-805-2139.