Silent Retreat Day
Ignatian Spiritual Excercises
School of prayer
Silent Retreat: March 18, 2023
Making decisions with God, First Sundays (January - May, 2023)
Ignatian Spiritual Exercises: May 26-29
World Youth Day, Lisbon 2023: July 26-August 10
Campaign of the Visitation
Camino de Santiago
Campaign of the Visitation
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Testimonies - News
SPIRITUAL EXERCISES EXPERIENCES
I came into the spiritual exercises simply craving silence and time alone with God. I was truly not sure what else to expect. In the months leading up the spiritual exercises, I was feeling lost and I knew that I needed a renewal in my spiritual life. During one of the first meditations, we learned that the spiritual exercises are meant to be a decisive encounter with God. It is meant to be life-changing. This is actually the best summary for the entire weekend. With each meditation and spiritual readings, it seemed that God was speaking directly to my life. I had been struggling with anxiety and fear for many years, but during these spiritual exercises, God was calling me to abandon myself and to trust in Him despite my feelings. I felt called to know that God is still creating me and ordering my life and I can rest in that knowledge and not worry about anything. This has been my greatest takeaway from the spiritual exercises. It has been a blessing to see how the Lord is continuing to pour out graces in the weeks following the spiritual exercises and helping me to implement a lot of the practical resolutions I made over that weekend. I still feel anxious and distressed sometimes, but I am no longer a slave to those feelings. Little by little, God is helping me to grow closer to Him and to trust in Him more.
This weekend’s spiritual exercises were not life-changing for me, but I think they will be. It was my first time going through them, so it took some adjusting to and I learned a lot. Possibly my biggest takeaway was from looking at Jesus’ interaction with the woman caught in adultery (John 8:1-11). With one interaction, He saved both her body and soul, and He does this for us every time we go to confession! During our last contemplation, I asked Our Lady to help me see where my next mission will be, and I felt the replay as “you’re not ready to know yet, child. Just stay by me now.” I think by putting into daily practice what I learned during the exercises (the Ignatian examen, contemplation of biblical scenes, looking at what Jesus says in the Gospels from the perspective of His heart, and recognizing my disordered attachments), I’ll stay close to God and will be allowing Him to transform my heart little-by-little. Eventually, looking back from the future, I think I’ll see that this weekend will have changed my life.