Engaging Faith: Practical lesson ideas and activities for Catholic Educators

November 15, 2006

Ready to Retreat?

Haven’t done much of this myself in recent years, but I hear that a growing smorgasbord of spiritual retreats now offered at many retreat centers around the country can be “lifesavers” for us battle-weary, multi-tasking adults who can’t readily ease off the fast track. Teachers, of course, fall into this large lump of humanity in our culture.

A recent contact with Ann Luther, executive director of Retreats International, now based in Chicago, confirms that there’s plenty of teacher-friendly retreat options nationwide. It’s true that many diocesan education offices annually offer some retreats for teachers but sometimes these are just not enough. “Rehab for the soul” – that’s Anne’s take on what retreats can do for us.

Retreats International’s website directs you to a state by state listing of RI member centers. Most retreat facilities feature websites or phone numbers to let your fingers to the shopping. Cruise this site. Everything from the snug cabins tucked into the woods at the Creighton University Retreat Center at Griswold, Iowa to the breathtaking views of the Pacific offered by a center like the Headlands Institute Conference and Retreat Center near Rodeo Beach, and twenty minutes from San Francisco.

According to Luther, many teachers might prefer thematic retreats on topics like politics and faith, peace, the psalms. These retreats are often offered on weekends or in the evenings. If you’ve got a bit more time, you and some teaching buddies may want to try a guided retreat. These retreats, Luther says, feature talks on selected themes or Scriptures, but allow retreatants plenty of quiet time to read, recharge, pray, walk, swim, row a boat, and zzzzzzzzz . . . get in some holy snoozing. Directed retreats usually take longer and present the Ignatian retreat format.

It all sounds great to me . . . What’s your take?

Comments

1 sarah glaser

Nov. 17, 2006
Retreats are great for adults. But I have such a difficult time planning them for high school because retreat centers do not like large groups of teenagers at their facility. It bothers me that we are open to adults but seniors in high school are unacceptable. My diocese built a retreat center that they will not allow me to use with my senior retreat. Is anyone else having this problem?

2 sarah glaser

Nov. 17, 2006
Retreats are great for adults. But I have such a difficult time planning them for high school because retreat centers do not like large groups of teenagers at their facility. It bothers me that we are open to adults but seniors in high school are unacceptable. My diocese built a retreat center that they will not allow me to use with my senior retreat. Is anyone else having this problem?

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