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Silent Retreat

July 11, 2013

I had never gone on a silent retreat before, but went on the spirituality exercises charism retreat that the Missionary Cenacle Family runs. The entire experience is a 30 day retreat, but they attack it in 3 to 8 day increments, since most of us can’t take 30 days off, no matter how wonderful an experience it is.
June 25 to 28 I was in Philly for this one, others continued to July 4th. For the MCA and BTMI, who can’t do the 10 days, they offer the first 4 or last 4 – when they advertised it, they offered the weekend part of it, then realized, as it is a silent retreat, we needed to come in at the beginning or the end, so there would be a social and we could talk a bit together. This is one of the many reasons I love this spiritual family – ‘any excuse for a party is a good excuse’ is one of the quotes from Fr. Judge, our founder, that goes right to my heart.
Not talking is not something I am known for, so I wasn’t sure how well I would do, but it was terrific. After our social on Tuesday, we were to be silent except during our one hour spiritual guidance time, and during the Mass, which we celebrated each day as well. The psalm doesn’t say, ‘Listen, your servant is speaking’, but ‘Speak, your servant is listening’, as Fr. Wendel, a Redemptorist friend says. So we spent the rest of the time listening to whatever the Spirit has to say to us.
Then I got sick, felt a sore throat coming on Thursday, and when I went back to work on Friday night I discovered I had laryngitis. I guess I needed to be silent a little longer.
My husband and I have been talking about leaving NYC and going rural somewhere where there is snow, for years, but we haven’t found any jobs that can take us there. A friend suggested I get a CRE job to get us out of town, and during the retreat that thought kept coming back to me. So I will explore that and see where the Spirit leads. Of course I am old and haven’t done the job in years, but scripture says ‘Don’t say, “I am too old”‘ and all that, so I just have to trust and go with it.

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