Francis House of Prayer

TrenTON DIOCESAN SPIRITUAL CENTER

GIFT CERTIFICATES

Gift Certificates for any amount are always available if you would like to treat someone to a retreat or program at Francis House.  Call if interested, or get one when you come.  A great birthday present!​

SETTING THE DIRECTION FOR 2020

      Thursday, January 2     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

What better way to spend this day!  Start out 2020 with a morning retreat to set the direction for the year.  “Well begun is half done,” they say, and establishing a direction is essential for the journey.  Where am I going in 2020?  What is the desire of my heart, and God’s as we begin this year together?  Donation: $25, includes lunch.


FRIDAY MORNING RETREAT
THE INTERIOR CASTLE OF ST. TERESA


      6 Fridays     9:15 AM – 12:00 PM
     January 3     March 6      May 1
     February 7     April 3      May 29


This year we will use St. Teresa’s Interior Castle for the content of our Friday mornings.  Each month we will focus on one of her 7 dwelling places as a means of understanding and experiencing the dynamic of the spiritual journey. The morning will also include two 20-minute sessions of contemplative prayer, time for some quiet reflection and a 20-minute video on the Interior Castle by Keith Egan. Donation: $150, includes book.


LIVING CONTEMPLATIVELY

     6 Saturdays      9:15 AM – 3:30 PM
     January 4     March 7     May 2
     February 8     April 4     May 30

This program calls out to those who desire to live more contemplatively in the world, to grow in union with God and others, and to become more aware, intentional, and free.  God liberates us and heals us through the practice of contemplative prayer.  Wonderful spiritual reading will support our contemplative prayer throughout the year.  It’s worth a day a month and an hour a day.  Bring a bag lunch. Donation: $240.


MONTHLY BIBLE STUDY

      6 Mondays     9:30 – 11:30 AM
      January 6     March 2      April 27
      February 3     March 30     May 18

We will study and pray with the Gospel of John during these 9 monthly sessions.  What a privilege!  Please bring your Bible.  Led by Sister Pat Mensing, SSJ.  Donation:  Love Offering.


PERSONAL RETREAT DAYS

     Wednesdays       9:30 AM – 2:30 PM
     January 8      March 4     May 20
     February 5     April 1       June 3
                            April 29
Not a series.  Take a day away from the busyness of your life to rest a while in the Lord and experience God’s presence. Come to Francis House for silence, personal prayer and optional spiritual direction.  The day begins and ends with a brief prayer together.  Come to as many as you can.  Donation: $10; $40 with spiritual direction.  Please bring a bag lunch.


THE 12 STEPS
A PATH TO RECOVERY


     6 Thursdays      9:00 – 10:30 AM
     January 9     March 5     April 30
     February 6     April 2      May 21

The 12 Steps are for all of us, as we all have attachments and addictions and desire freedom from them.  This Program will take us through the traditional 12 Steps that teach us to rely on God as our Liberator.  We will use The 12 Steps Meet the Gospel and Divine Therapy and Addiction for further support between sessions.  Whether you are new to the 12 Steps or are very familiar with them, you are welcome.  If you’ve always wanted to do a 12 Step program but just haven’t had the opportunity, please come and give God a chance to set you free.  Led by Mary DeJoseph and Deacon Bill Wilson.  Donation: $30 for both books and a Love Offering for each session.


HONORING YOUR CONTEMPLATIVE SOUL
THE BEST OF THOMAS KEATING


     6 Thursdays     10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
     January 9      March 5     April 30
     February 6     April 2       May 21

During this 2-hour session each month, we will combine the teachings of Trappist Monk, Fr. Thomas Keating on contemplation with our discussion of his classics on contemplative prayer, Intimacy with God and Invitation to Love. We will conclude each session with 20 minutes of contemplative prayer. This program is particularly for those who desire to deepen their practice of contemplative prayer, or centering prayer as we sometimes call it. Donation: $125, includes both books. If you can, make a day of it by attending the St. John of the Cross series at 1:30 PM.  


SIMPLIFYING LIFE
CLEANING UP & CLEANING OUT


      Monday, January 13     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Do you find yourself complaining, “I have too much stuff!”  Is de-cluttering one of your desires for 2020?   We are going to make a plan to clean up and clean out, to simplify and enjoy life more, to have a lighter grasp and a freer heart for the more important things of life. We will gather again in the Spring to see how it went.  Step by Step, with support and prayer, we will be clutter-free by Easter!  With God’s help and with one another, we can do it!  Donation: $25, includes lunch.


FRIENDS OF ST. TERESA OF AVILA


     6 Wednesdays     9:30 – 11:30 AM
     January 15     March 11     May 6
     February 12     April 8     June 10


St. Teresa has the great gift of writing about her relationship with God in such a way that helps us know that intimacy with God is an invitation and gift to us all.  Come join us as Teresa leads us on our journey to full union with God.  This journey is for all of us.  This year we will focus on her autobiography.  Each session will also include 20 minutes of contemplative prayer.  Donation: $125, includes book. 


MELT THE FROZEN, WARM THE CHILL


      Friday, January 17              9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


Come to the silence, warmth and beauty of Francis House to receive a winter retreat day that promises to melt your heart and warm your soul with the fire of Divine Love.  Simple, yet profound!  Donation: $20, includes lunch.


DISCOVERING THE COSMIC CHRIST


      Tuesday, January 21     9:30 AM – 3:00 PM


You will be filled with awe discovering the Cosmic Christ.  We will use the writings of St. Paul, St. John, Teilhard de Chardin, Richard Rohr and Ilia Delio to explore how everything and everyone is connected through Christ in a constant pull to loving union.  Please come - the day will knock your socks off!  Donation: $35, includes materials & lunch.


GOD PURSUES US


      Wednesday, January 29     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


It’s mind boggling to consider that God pursues us.  Isn’t it the other way around?  If you desire to enter more deeply in relationship with God, the truth is that God placed that desire within and seeks a relationship with you as well.  Please join us for this retreat which will help you notice what happens in the various stages of prayer.  We will be guided by the wise words of Thomas H. Green, SJ in his book, Experiencing God: The Three Stages of Prayer.  Donation: $35, includes book and lunch.


DELIGHT IN GOD
WITH ST. HILDEGARD OF BINGEN


      Friday, January 31 & Monday, March 2     9:30 – 11:30 AM

Connect with God through the inspirations of St. Hildegard of Bingen who came to know God deeply through Scripture, nature, music…just to name a few.  This most recent woman Doctor of the Church offers us simple ways to be more aware of God’s generous love.  Donation: $30, includes materials.


 
A LONG LOVING LOOK AT THE REAL
WHAT IS CONTEMPLATION?


      Monday, February 10     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


Contemplation has been described by Fr. Walter Burghardt, SJ, as “a long loving look at the real.”  We will spend time in this retreat discovering how God invites each of us to a quiet stillness within, where Truth resides.  We will use the wisdom of Thomas Merton, St. Teresa of Avila, Thomas Keating and the anonymous author of The Cloud of Unknowing to lead us in our experience of contemplation.  Donation: $25, includes lunch and materials.


MEETING CHRIST IN PRAYER
EXPERIENCE OF THE SPIRITUAL EXERCISES


      8 Mondays       9:30 – 11:00 AM
      February 24   March 9, 16, 23, 30   April 20, 27   May 4

This is another wonderful way to experience the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. You will be invited to pray about 30 minutes each day. If your relationship with God is pleading for attention and if you feel called by God to deepen your prayer in 2020, please treat yourself to this retreat. Donation: $135, includes materials.  You will:
–     Learn to pray more deeply
–     Grow in friendship with God
–     Come to know Jesus more intimately
–     Savor the Word of God as a primary means of recognizing the presence and action of God.


LENTEN OFFERINGS
ASH WEDNESDAY RETREAT


      Wednesday, February 26     9:30 AM – 1:30 PM


We love beginning Lent together with this retreat at Francis House because it provides a gentle structure for the six-week journey ahead. This year I thought you would enjoy Give Up Worry for Lent: 40 Days of Finding Peace in Christ to guide your Lenten prayer.  Liturgy is included with the reception of ashes within it.  Donation: $35, includes lunch and the book for your 6-week Lenten journey.


LENTEN RETREAT
LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOU LOVE YOURSELF


      Thursday, February 27     9:30 AM – 2:30 PM


Coming to know yourself and your own personality can help you know and love others in theirs.  Self-acceptance and acceptance of others is at the heart of the Gospel.  During this Lenten retreat, we will ask God for the grace to understand and appreciate not only ourselves but those who are very different from us by personality so that we can live and work together in peaceful harmony.  Donation: $35, includes lunch and materials.


THE SACRED SPACE OF LENT
RETREAT FOR BUSY PEOPLE


      Friday, February 28     10:00 AM – Noon


So many of us are overly busy, but still want to make Lent a holy, sacred time, even in the midst of the busyness.  This short morning retreat, on the third day of Lent might be just the thing for you.  The Sacred Space of Lent will offer you the opportunity to make your own retreat, day by day, throughout the season.  Your Lent will be so rich and deep, yet simple. Simply coming to Francis House helps!  Donation: $30, includes book.


THE MATURING OF YOUR SOUL
PILGRIMAGE INTO THE LAST THIRD OF LIFE


      3 Fridays     9:30 AM – 1:30 PM
      March 13     April 1     May 15

To age is to transition into the last period of growth.  The invitation from God in the final years of life is to deeper intimacy, and to living more courageously, consciously and contemplatively from your soul as you prepare for your eventual transition into new life. We are offering a 3-part series that meets monthly for the 65+ who are in this most graced season of life. We will use Ronald Rolheiser’s video Aging Gracefully, Living Fruitfully as part of our series and read Vesper Time by Frank Cunningham between sessions. Donation: $15 for the book and $25 for each session. Lunch included. 


GOD’S GRACE CAN SET YOU FREE!
EARLY-BIRD SPECIAL


      3 Tuesdays     8:00 – 9:15 AM
      March 17, 24 and 31


Are you looking for something to enhance your Lenten Season?  Is morning good for you?  If so,this is the perfect choice! God wants to set us free from all co-dependency, attachments and addictions.  Do you believe that?  Are you willing to be set free by God’s grace?  This 3-part series will help.  St. John of the Cross and Teilhard de Chardin will be our teachers, as we use their treatment of detachment for our instruction and healing.  Freedom is possible! How free do you want to be?  Donation: $60, includes book.


MAY CHRIST LIVE IN YOUR HEART
MAINTAINING INTERIOR PEACE


      Wednesday, March 18     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


We live in a day and age characterized by an extraordinary amount of agitation, fear and anxiety.  This tendency manifests itself in our interior as well as our exterior lives.  How can we find peace of heart and learn to respond graciously to the upsetting situations we must all face?  Would you like to choose the practice of interior peace as the focus of the second half of your Lenten Journey?  You will receive a small, readable book for your reflection.  Donation: $30, includes book and lunch.


MEDITATION ON THE WAY OF THE CROSS


      Friday, March 20     9:30 AM – 2:00 PM


Focusing on several Stations of the Cross, we will ponder the meaning they had two thousand years ago and today. St. Teresa of Calcutta said, “Suffering in itself is nothing: but suffering shared with Christ's passion is a wonderful gift.  The most beautiful gift of human beings is that they can share in the passion of Christ.  Yes, a gift and a sign of his love; because this is how God proved divine love for the world - by giving Jesus to die for us.” Presenter: JoLynn Krempecki. Donation: Love Offering, includes lunch.


THE GIFT OF LIFE & LIFE ETERNAL


      2 Tuesdays     10:00 AM – 2:00 PM      March 24 & 31


At some level we are always preparing for death.  It is always before us. We experience dread sometimes and yet are fascinated by the Mystery which is so beyond us! The dying process is the culmination or peak of development – the whole development of the spiritual journey in which the total surrender into God involves the gift of life itself. Death is perhaps the most complete surrender. For that reason, it is not death, but life, a movement into a fullness that we can’t imagine. Trappist Father Thomas Keating, via tape, will lead us through this 2-part retreat.  His final days and years were filled with wisdom that we all need as God prepares us for the awesome road ahead.  Donation: $25 a session, lunch included.


A DAY WITH OUR CRUCIFIED LORD
THE 7 LAST WORDS


      Friday, March 27     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM
Join us for this special Lenten morning retreat on the Seven Last Words of Christ.  We will use Scripture meditations, art and music to allow ourselves to love Christ by accompanying Him in His Passion.  Donation: Love Offering, includes a simple meatless lunch.


CONTEMPLATING GOD IN NATURE
WITH MERTON AS OUR GUIDE


      Wednesday, April 22     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


Open your eyes, ears and hearts to God’s glory in nature.  We will reflect on Thomas Merton’s nature writings collected in When the Trees Say Nothing and let his words inspire us to be more attentive to the love of God vibrating through nature everywhere.  Then we will spend some time outdoors at Francis House enjoying what God has created and reflecting on God as a loving Creator.  All is a gift of God that helps each one of us to know, love and serve God with joy and gratitude.  Donation $25, includes lunch.


OUR SEARCH FOR MEANING


      Thursday, April 23     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


“There is nothing in the world I venture to say that would effectively help one to survive even in the worst conditions as the knowledge that there is a meaning in one’s life.” (Viktor Frankl)  Let’s return to Frankl’s classic, Man’s Search For Meaning  to discover the timeless truth within… that love is all that matters.  Donation: $35, includes lunch and book.


FIVE SHORT WAYS TO PRAY


      Friday, April 24     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


Prayer is contact with God.  Prayer happens when the real God and the real you meet.  Sometimes brief encounters are the best.  This morning retreat will acquaint you with five short ways to enjoy direct communication with the God who knows and loves you as you are.  Give it a try…come, spend the morning. Have a good lunch.  Donation: $25, includes lunch.


THOUGHTS MATTER


      Tuesday, April 28     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


“My thoughts make all the difference in my world.”  Believe it or not, we have the ability to choose our thoughts.  This freedom is essential to our spiritual well-being and emotional health.  This morning retreat will help us learn to notice our thoughts as they arise and choose to accept them or replace them.  With prayer and practice, we can choose our thoughts and receive a mind at peace, stilled and available for conscious thinking at will.  Donation: $25, includes lunch & materials.


THE MIRACLE OF A MOTHER’S PRAYER


      Thursday, May 7     9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


This day of prayer is for mothers of children of any age.  We will pray over the agony and ecstasy of motherhood and give well spent time to intercessory prayer for the healing, wholeness and happiness of our children.  This day of prayer is a perfect way to prepare for your day, Mother’s Day. Donation: $25, includes lunch.


WANDER INTO THE WILD


      Monday, May 11     9:30 AM – 2:30 PM


Can I let my guard down and simply be myself when I spend time with God?  Walking in the woods is like wandering into the wild with God.  If I remain open, God will lead me through unexplored territories and offer fresh perspectives to perplex and delight me.  We will pray with the psalms using Thomas Merton’s book, Bread in the Wilderness.  Also, a portion of the day will be spent outdoors practicing being attentive to God’s Presence in nature through the Awareness Exercise.  Donation: $30, includes lunch.


GROWING OLDER GRACEFULLY
ON THE BRINK OF EVERYTHING


      Tuesday, May 12     9:30 AM - 1:00 PM


Parker Palmer in his recent book invites us to take a closer look at the gift and beauty of aging.  That we age is not our choice, of course!  How we age is perhaps the most important choice of all.  Come together with others who are travelling the pilgrimage into the last third of life for prayerful support as God does His work of maturing your soul.  Donation: $35, includes book and lunch.


ANNUAL CLEANING PARTY


      Friday, May 22     9 AM to Noon or \1:00 – 4:00 PM
      Saturday, May 23     9:00 AM – Noon


Please come and help us clean Francis House.  Bring your favorite cleaning supplies.   Please choose a 3-hour shift that is convenient for you and call 609-877-0509 with your choice. Actually, it’s fun!  Thanks so much. Breakfast & Lunch provided.​

REGISTRATION INFORMATION


Please register for all programs by calling 609-877-0509. Be sure to include your full name and PHONE NUMBER and the title of the program on our voice mail. Registering by phone is preferred!


If you wish to register by email, refer to "Contact Us."

Morning Programs