A Blessing of Solitude
by John O’Donohue
May you recognize in your life the presence, power and light of your soul.
May you realize that you are never alone,
that your soul in its brightness and belonging connects you
intimately with the rhythm of the universe.
May you have respect for your own individuality and difference.
May you realize that the shape of your soul is unique,
that you have a special destiny here,
that behind the facade of your life there is something
beautiful, good, and eternal happening.
May you learn to see yourself with the same delight, pride,
and expectation with which God sees you in every moment.
PRIVATE RETREAT OPTIONS
Private retreats for those seeking the spiritual power and depth that can only be achieved through solitude are available for scheduling throughout the year.
You are welcome to schedule a self-directed retreat in one of our hermitages. Day retreats may be arranged as well as overnight options. Many come for a day and come back for a weekend or week. Each hermitage is equipped so you may prepare your own meals and truly experience solitude. You also have the option of having meals prepared for you by The Port Chefs. If a hermitage is not available or you prefer a different environment, you many schedule your retreat in La Verna, located in the Motherhouse. Each room has a private bath, sitting area, and desk. A large community room with a kitchenette, and fireplace is included in the retreat area. Meals may be prepared by you or you may have meals in the main dining room.
Spiritual Directors are available to meet with you if you choose to plan a private directed retreat. Arrangements will be made for you to discuss your needs in advance with a Spiritual Director who will guide you during your stay.
30/40 Day Franciscan Retreat
Using Sister Mary Elizabeth Imler’s book entitled A FRANCISCAN SOLITUDE EXPERIENCE: THE PILGRIM’S JOURNAL; this retreat is based on the Third Order Rule, and builds on our rich Franciscan heritage by drawing on the writings of Francis and Clare. Participants are invited into the freedom to simply be, using the journal as a guide. A theme reflection every 10 days is included as well as opportunities to be companioned by spiritual directors as one wishes. Call for current fees.
Resources for your Retreat
The grounds of St. Francis woods are available for strolling along the creek, walking the Labyrinth or the Cosmic Walk. Chapels for prayer, books for inspiration, and CDs for meditation are also available to you along with the option to join the Franciscan Sisters for daily mass. Most plan to add Spiritual Direction or a healing body treatment to create the perfect mind, body, spirit, retreat.