The weekend silent retreat for men and women will have the option of three or four days: retreatants can choose to attend Friday through Sunday or Friday through Monday (Labor Day).
Father Barak, director of the St. John Paul II House, said the retreat “is for anyone seeking a deep encounter with God.”
“By entering into His word in the Scriptures and the silence,” he explained, “one experiences the presence of God and enters an intimate conversation with Him.”
The directed retreat will follow the method and structure of prayer developed by St. Ignatius of Loyola in his famous Spiritual Exercises. Retreatants will meet privately with one of the priests for spiritual direction and guidance in prayer each day.
St. Ignatius of Loyola is known for founding the Society of Jesus. Born to a noble family, he later became a soldier in the Spanish army and was wounded during the siege of Pamplona in 1521. During his recuperation, he read “Lives of the Saints” and the experience led him to undergo a profound conversion. He spent a year in solitude before writing his famous “Spiritual Exercises” and then made a pilgrimage to Rome and the Holy Land, where he worked to convert Muslims.
To learn more about how Ignatian prayer opens the message of the Scriptures and leads to the heart, see the book Meditation and Contemplation by Father Timothy Gallagher.