IS AN INDIVIDUALLY DIRECTED RETREAT?
an individually directed retreat three parties are involved. The
first is the Lord who desires to draw closer to us in a relationship
of love, and who invites and inspires individuals for that purpose
to come aside to a secluded place and rest a while (Mk 6:30-32).
second is the retreatant, a person who is seeking a more intimate
relationship with the Lord and perhaps the Lord's will in some
particular area of life. The retreatant responds willingly under
grace to God's call, sets aside the normal occupations and preoccupations
of daily life, comes to a place apart, like Manresa, and takes
the time to grow quiet, to center, and to listen for what the
Lord will say. Retreatants need to have experience in prayer,
the ability to enter into silence, enough self-awareness to recognize
their own inward movements and feelings and their moments of consolation
and desolation in prayer, and enough openness and trust to share
these experiences with their director.
third party is the retreat director. Spiritual companion
on the journey might be a more appropriate title, since
it is the Lord who directs both retreat and retreatant. The director,
in daily meetings with the retreatant, listens to and encourages
retreatants to give voice to their experience in prayer and to
come to a deeper perception and understanding of that experience.
Together they try to discover the movements of the Holy Spirit,
to discern the direction God appears to be leading, and to choose
topics for prayer that seem the most appropriate at that moment.
The Sacred Heart Court
(Photo: Dave Brockman)
while conference retreats are aimed at the general situation of
a number of people, and private retreats are sometimes made by
experienced retreatants on their own without a director, individually
directed retreats are tailored to suit the unique calling and
experience of an individual through the assistance of an experienced
spiritual guide. Manresa retreat directors draw upon their experience
and knowledge of the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius Loyola
and upon the spirituality, dynamic, principles, and various meditations
and prayer forms of those Exercises to advise retreatants about
the unique and personal journey that each retreatant is making.
a typical day retreatants will meet individually with the director.
For Roman Catholics the Eucharist is a focal point of the day.
The rest of the time is spent in meditation and other activities
designed to deepen their awareness of God and their relationship
with God. These activities are solitary and contemplative and
can include journaling, reading, listening to music, or walking
on Manresa's 39-acre grounds. The number, nature and length of
periods of formal prayer each day will depend upon the ability
and needs of the individual, as will the length of the retreat
itself. Most people make retreats of five to eight days in length.
We strongly recommend a minimum of at least three full days since
it takes some time just to slow down and get into the silence.
inquire further contact us. For
retreats of eight days or less you may register
online or print this the application
form and mail it to Fr. Fennessy at Manresa. Among other considerations,
acceptance of the application will depend upon the availability
of room and an appropriate director for the time chosen.