Facing your own crossroads: My First Cenacle Retreat Experience

I came in half heated, and soon found the other half in there.

Oftentimes, retreats and recollections that I’ve been to are rather of a bigger group which means little time of sharing and getting to know a person in a spiritual level. This time around it was different.

The Cenacle Sisters or the Congregation of Our lady of the Retreat in the Cenacle (RC) founded atop the mountainous terrains of France specialized in giving retreats and spiritual direction to Catholics and non Catholics alike. This year I was lucky to be part of the second batch of a few and chosen people who will undergo a 3 day retreat in Loyola,QC.

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Cenacle Retreat House Facade and Prayer Rooms

Hesitation filled our hearts as all retreatants (coined word for retreat participants) blurt out personal reasons of why they anxiously would want to deny the call of this event- I myself had a few reservations including my Dad’s birthday celebration, dragonboat training, weekend plans etc. I could not help but to think how is this retreat worthy of the time I could have spent with my usual adventure filled weekends.

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REPLENISHING THE SOUL

Our day started with a hearty breakfast where I realized the few times busy people actually sit down for an hour or so and have breakfast. The idea struck me and made me think that this retreat might actually provide me time to stop, pause and count the beautiful things I have been missing brought by a fast paced life. How we have seem to forget that God has graced everything we encounter for our own benefit, but sadly we seem not to care. True enough, the spirit moved everyone of us as sharing time opened up our deepest desires in life and crossroads we presently face. It was a moving scenario how we found commonalities among each of us and how we can all be a support to one another.

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Upper Left: The Cenacle House Prayer Labyrinth for walking meditation. Upper Left: Terrapins of the retreat house. Lower left: Yogi the house bunny. Lower right: Meditative garden of the Our Lady of the Retreat

Here are some of my favorite mantras/verses that I have heard during the retreat:

Your heart’s greatest and deepest desire is the SAME as God’s plan to you.

Si God ay gentlemen- he gives us choices, walang pilitan.

God is LOVE

In planning, Begin with the END in sight

The things that you hide from and the things that you are looking for are all found in you.

Decision making is different with DISCERNMENT.

I will be very glad to recommend this retreat to anyone who is in the point of confusion, of weighing options or to those who would want a break from the hurly burly of the metro. Til then! 🙂

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CENACLE RETREAT HOUSE

59 Nicanor Reyes Street,
Loyola Heights, Quezon City,
1108 Philippines
Phone: 434-2054, 434-3064 Fax: 434-6943
Mobile 0927-5608032, 0917-5703349
Email: cenacle.philippines@gmail.com

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