By Fr. Ron Will, CPPS
Here we go with our next installment in this series about silent directed retreats. In Part 1, we talked about what a directed retreat is, and in Parts 2 and 3, we looked at some expectations about prayer during the retreat.
Let’s continue to look at prayer, but from an angle you might not expect: Will I be able to pray on retreat? That seems like a silly question, right? Of course, I’ll pray on retreat that’s the whole point, right?
Fourth question: Will I be able to pray?
Prayer can and does become difficult during a directed retreat. (I bet you weren’t expecting that answer!) Your director is there as a companion to help discern whether you would do better to push harder or to let up or to move elsewhere.
The important thing is not to become discouraged.
Here we are discerning both the movement of God and our own movement — or lack of it — in response. Often even the director will be sounding the depths with you just as much at sea as you. It is your heart and your language not the director’s that is the basis of your retreat. Your director is simply a companion and a compass for pointing to your more intimate but sometimes barely perceptible companion, Jesus Christ.
We have adapted our retreat format so that you can make the retreat from your own home. We will use this format for those who cannot attend in-person events. You will still meet daily with a spiritual director for a personalized retreat experience.
Our next stay-at-home directed retreat is Sept. 16-18, 2022, 9 a.m. Friday to 5 p.m. Sunday.
There will be a couple of retreat directors available to you, including me. You can make a reservation — there is a $10 registration fee
[Fr. Ron Will, a Precious Blood priest and spiritual director, is a graduate of Catholic Theological Union and Creighton University’s School of Christian Spirituality. He has a special interest in helping form intentional disciples of Jesus, encouraging others to go spiritually deep-sea diving to explore a deeper relationship with God, and walking with people as they dive into the ocean of God’s mystery actually experiencing God rather than simply dipping one’s toe into the water.]