Spiritual Retreat Vs. Joining Monastary? Need Advise?


#1

Hi Everyone,

I would appreciate some advise. Long story short: I wanted to test a vocation by joining a monastery for a couple week> months ago I spoke to a priest at my parish about it> He contacted an abbey and they accecpted me to come.

Finally I decided that I would go in this week. However, the same priest who organised for me to go there just sent me an email which said.

"The abbey has a spiritual retreat in silence, They advise you to come 2 weeks later, 25th of march".

So the question: Does this "Spiritual retreat" mean that I will not be in the abbey itself? It's confusing because the priest is not a native english speaker so I'm not sure exactly what he meant by that. I was originally under the impression that I would be joining the abbey for 2 weeks.

What do you (people of this forum) make of this? Does it just mean that I will have to be entirely silent?

Please Advise,
Thanks
Lucien


#2

[quote="lucien123, post:1, topic:276830"]
Hi Everyone,

I would appreciate some advise. Long story short: I wanted to test a vocation by joining a monastery for a couple week> months ago I spoke to a priest at my parish about it> He contacted an abbey and they accecpted me to come.

Finally I decided that I would go in this week. However, the same priest who organised for me to go there just sent me an email which said.

"The abbey has a spiritual retreat in silence, They advise you to come 2 weeks later, 25th of march".

So the question: Does this "Spiritual retreat" mean that I will not be in the abbey itself? It's confusing because the priest is not a native english speaker so I'm not sure exactly what he meant by that. I was originally under the impression that I would be joining the abbey for 2 weeks.

What do you (people of this forum) make of this? Does it just mean that I will have to be entirely silent?

Please Advise,
Thanks
Lucien

[/quote]

I would probably have understood your priest to mean that the abbey is doing a spiritual retreat in silence now, so it would be best for you to come later (hard to meet you, give you orientation, and give you a representative experience all in silence). Why not just write him back and ask what he meant?


#3

Thanks for the reply. I just realised I missed out one sentence from his quote, where he says I would be lonely with no one around. I'll just edit that now.


#4

By this point, you should be communicating with the monastery directly and not through your priest.

The relationship you’re describing of trial runs at a monastery usually start small and increase in length. You might come as a weekend visitor, then come back a month or two later for 5 days to stay behind the enclosure or close to it, then come back for a couple weeks with them, and so on. How much you participate in their full schedule usually starts at 0 on the first trip and increases through the visits and subsequent formation.


#5

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.