Saturday, November 30, 2013

I'll be away for a while...

Image source

This Sunday afternoon (December 1) I'll be heading to the north shore to spend a week at Eastern Point Retreat House in Gloucester (above).  I'll be back in the parish on Saturday afternoon, December 7, in time for the 5:00 Mass.

I've made many retreats over the years at this retreat center on the coast, the first being my ordination retreat in 1973. 

I'll be making a directed retreat which means the week will be spent in silence, broken only by a daily conversation with my retreat director and with prayer and song at Mass.  The house rule for the rest of the time is silence, including meal times in the dining room.

I'm often asked if I find the silence difficult to handle: not at all!  I find the quiet to be a peaceful stillness that refreshes and restores my soul and my prayer.

What does one do with all that silent time on a directed retreat?  It's time to slow down, pray, rest, pray, read, reflect, pray, ponder, remember, wonder, pray, and renew and revitalize my relationship with the Lord. And time to pray!  I need and look forward to all of that...

While I'm on retreat I won't be actively posting on my blog except for a few Advent posts I have scheduled to post ahead of time. And no email or phone!

And here's a photo I took last year of the chapel in the center of the main house at Eastern Point.  (That's a tabernacle in the center; the windows overlook the rocky coast and the ocean; and there are chairs all around the perimeter of the room.)

Photo by CP

I'll be praying for you in this simple beautiful chapel and would be grateful for your prayers for me in return.

See you on December 8, the Second Sunday of Advent.





     
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2 comments:

Anonymous said...

My prayers will be with you, Austin. Have a peaceful time with God on your retreat.

Rosemary

Ginger West said...

What a perfect. Way to begin this Advent time of waiting! May the Lord bless your retreat sbundantly, Dear Father - and may Satan leave you alone. You are in my prayers.