I am writing this blog entry on Sunday evening, October 22. I had been looking forward to this past weekend for several months now. It is a weekend when I have the opportunity to leave home and spend time on a “formal retreat” with my dad, my son, my two brothers, one of my brothers’ sons, and several of my brothers in Christ from St. John the Evangelist, the church where I am a parishioner.
Most people whom I talk to think that a retreat is a very religious experience for a small number of people who choose to participate. It is just that! But it is so much more. This is my twenty-first year traveling to Malvern, PA to attend a retreat at the Malvern Retreat House the third weekend in October. You can learn much about this amazing place at MalvernRetreat.com. It is one of many highlights for me every year.
There are many reasons why I attend this formal retreat.
- It is time for fellowship with my dad, brothers, other family members, and my brothers in Christ.
- It is the opportunity to spend one-on-one time with Jesus Christ.
- It is time to continue to develop my personal relationship with Him.
- It is time to reflect on my life—what I have done, what I am currently doing, and what I plan to do in the future.
- It is time to pray.
- It is time to get away from focusing on the daily blessings in my life—folding laundry, taking care of the kitchen dishes, cleaning the house, organizing piles of school, personal, and faith papers, purchasing and putting away groceries. It may be tough to look at the previously items as blessings, but they truly are.
- It is time to reflect on my spiritual life.
- It is time to step back from everything that takes place at home and take a short break from everything.
- It is a time to get away from any “enemy” in my life, that which takes me away from doing God’s will.
- It is a time to think about how I can achieve my goals of reaching out to help others to make this world a better place for them.
This is what the men’s Malvern retreat is all about! It is when I set time aside for myself to do the things I just mentioned. Each time I attend this retreat, I leave the retreat grounds with an inner peace about myself and having been refreshed in so many ways—mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually. As a result, I can return home to my family and friends knowing that I am better able to be the best husband, the best father, the best dad, the best son, the best brother, the best uncle, the best cousin, and the best friend that I can be to others. So, what are you waiting for? Do what you must do to attend a retreat like the one I attended at Malvern Retreat House. It is such a wonderful way to go on a retreat!
The message below is at MalvernRetreat.com:
A VIBRANT CENTER FOR SPIRITUAL RENEWAL & FORMATION
All Are Welcome in This Place
At Malvern Retreat House, we meet each of our visitors where they are, offering them a quiet and healing respite from the demands and distractions of everyday life. All who set foot on our grounds are immediately touched by the peace and beauty they find.