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How is the Retreat tied to Belize?

Here's a brief story of how this retreat came to be. You will see how it is inspired by the Holy Spirit.

While I was in Belize, staying with the Pallottine Missionary Sisters, they loaned me this book. We prayed with it and the Liturgy of the Hours every morning at 5:45 am, Morning Prayer, and with Evening Prayer.

As I became familiar with the book, I started spending time with the reflections written by St. Pallotti. Below is one of them.

Quote from St. Pallotti, " God judges the perfection and value of our apostolic efforts according to the intentions of the heart and the ability of his creatures. Yes, in my opinion, all, [...] important people and single people, whether rich or poor, priests and lay people, alone or in community, old and young, men and women, the sick and the healthy, in any position of life assigned to them by God in his mercy, will be able to find some way of participating in the apostolic mission of Jesus Christ-with the merit due to them."

Those of you who know me, or have been to some of the retreats we have had these past few years, have heard something similar right?

You are created by God and you have a purpose. No matter who you are, there is a very good reason you are here, on this planet, at this time, and even reading this right now. You matter. Who you are matters. What you stand for, matters.

Needless to say, these reflections hit home.

While in Belize, I searched online for this little book and couldn't find it.

As you can see from the picture, this little book has been used for many years.

It is the official prayer manual called, "Pallottine Community Prayers". The last day that I was there, I asked if I could buy this book from the sisters. You can imagine how happy I was when Sister said she had been planning to give it to me! Woohoo. Yes! Thank you! I treasure this little book and have been using it daily since.

Back to the retreat...

Once I was home, I started looking through the rest of the book and discovered a "Model for Apostolic Prayer for special occasions" section. It is a 7 day reflection/study guide/prayer guide, starting on Monday through Sunday. I skimmed through the pages and realized that it would be more beneficial to go through this with others.

As I was praying, I was inspired to reach out to a few people and invite them to join me.

Now mind you, I reached out on a Sunday to join me in a 7 day, daily reading, praying and meditating, plus daily meeting together online to discuss what we were learning, starting the next day!

4 out of the 5 people invited accepted. Wow! That's pretty good right! Woohoo. Let the adventure begin!

We did this in 2 separate groups. It was an amazing journey. Thank you to all who went through this experience with us.

At the end, everyone loved it and, everyone said that we should do something with this. It is really good! We have to share it!

So ideas started rolling; maybe develop this into a class, or training, use it for our day retreats, etc.

Combining 7 days into a 1 day retreat wouldn't do it justice. Maybe a weekend retreat? Ok, if a weekend retreat, it needs to be 2 nights to make it worth it, and it needs to be "away from it all". Let's really "retreat". (Don't you just love it when everyone's ideas just jell together? 👍🏼😊🙏🏼👣)

The next day, I got to work calling retreat facilities. (This part of the story is in a previous blog)

Those of you who have gone on retreats know that if it's an over night, yes, it's good to get away from it all, but it seems like you just got there and you're already packing to get back. But a 2 night retreat, that's a different story!

You arrive Friday evening. There's time to unload, unwind, and settle in, meet people and get into the groove of the place, and the retreat.

Then, the next day, you can relax and enjoy the whole day without thinking about having to pack to get back.

By the third day, you don't want to leave!

Developing this retreat has been amazing. The Holy Spirit is truly guiding it. There have been some wonderful surprises! I won't spoil it for you by telling you here. You will see at the retreat. Oh my goodness.

I will share though, that on Saturday evening we have a celebration planned. Great food, music, and company. We have good reason to celebrate!

During the day there will be plenty of time to enjoy the great outdoors, visit the chapel, relax, and take it all in.

You will be served plenty of food for the body, mind and soul. This process brings, abundant blessings, energy, joy, and fortitude.

I get excited just thinking about it.

I'm looking forward to sharing all of it, with all of you! Hoping to see you there.

Early registration will be open in a few days.


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