THE LOVING-KINDNESS PRAYER,
CENTERING PRAYER AND THE LABYRINTH
           
Sunday, October 1      9:30 AM – 12:30 PM

My hopes for this morning, which happens to be the feast of St. Thérèse of Lisieux, are many.  I want to introduce you to the loving-kindness prayer, which fills us with compassion for ourselves and others.  We will have two 20-minute centering prayer sessions, and walk the labyrinth, too.  We will practice the loving-kindness prayer often throughout the day, so it can become part of you, and you can readily use it in the car, while taking a walk, or even while falling asleep at night.  This will be a wonderful Sabbath time for you.  
Donation: Love Offering


WOULD YOU LIKE TO BECOME AN
SSJ ASSOCIATE?
           
Sunday, October 1      2:00 – 4:00 PM

This session is for those interested in becoming Associates of the Sisters of St. Joseph.  You are welcome to attend this afternoon as a “come and see” experience, while you discern if God is calling you to join us in our charism of unity and reconciliation and in our mission to serve “the dear neighbor” with the same cordial charity with which St. Joseph served Jesus and Mary.  I hope you can come.  Remember that to be an SSJ Associate simply means to live out our charism and mission that “all may be one” wherever you are in whatever you do.

THE ARTIST’S WAY:
WALKING IN THIS WORLD
         
8 Mondays      9:30 – 11:00 AM

            October 2          December 18    March 5
            October 30        January 15        April 9
            November 27    February 5

Julia Cameron does it again!  For those who have participated in The Artist’s Way (above), the journey to recovering God’s gift of your creative self continues in Walking In This World.  Donation $105, includes book.  Led by Jill Snyder.


GROUP HEALTH COACHING
JOURNEYING WITH GOD TOWARDS HEALTH
         
6 Mondays      9:30 – 11:30 AM
            
            October 2, 16, 30       November 13, 27       December 11

We all know that making healthy changes to our diet and lifestyle can create the vibrant health we want in our lives.  God created our bodies to be healthy, strong, and resilient.  What we may not know, is how to make those changes.  Whatever is going on in your busy, stress-filled life impacts your weight, your health and how you feel about yourself. 
This program is a non-diet, God-centered, whole-life approach to making small changes that create lasting results in health and wellness.  Group coaching develops connections, gives confidence, and motivates you to develop solutions to meet your health challenges, all while feeling like you are having fun at a social event!  What will next year look like if you start investing in your future health right now?  Program includes materials and phone or email support between sessions.  Presented by Colleen McNally, Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach.  Limited to 5 persons.  Register early.  Donation: $150.

  

GLORIFY GOD BY IMPROVING YOUR HEALTH
         
4 Mondays      1:00 – 2:30 PM
            
            October 2, 9, 16 and 23

Our human bodies are the most intricate and amazing of God’s creations!  They were created to be beautiful, healthy, strong, and resilient.  Given half a chance, your body will heal itself.  Come to this four-session series to learn how you can make small changes in your nutrition and lifestyle to create big and lasting results in your health and well-being.  We will discuss a different topic each week, and you will create a unique plan for yourself to improve every aspect of your life – mind, body, and soul!  Presented by Colleen McNally, Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach.  Donation: $60, includes materials.


CELEBRATE ST. FRANCIS
LORD, MAKE ME AN INSTRUMENT OF YOUR PEACE
           
Wednesday, October 4           9:30 AM – 2:00 PM

Let’s have a wonderful celebration of St. Francis.  We will begin with liturgy in our portiuncula (outdoor chapel) on this great feast and follow with an inspiring film by Bishop Robert Barron on St. Francis. You will feel like you are in Assisi! We will proceed to spend some time outdoors, weather permitting, to walk the labyrinth and enjoy the beauty of creation as Francis would insist.  We will close with a delicious lunch to continue to celebrate St. Francis at Francis House. You will receive Murray Bodo’s delightful classic on Francis, The Journey and the Dream, to further your enjoyment of St. Francis.  Donation: $30, includes lunch and book.

ART JOURNALING 
           
Wednesday, October 4           7:00 – 8:30 PM

This evening retreat will help you express the content of your prayer in color.  You will be surprised as you journal with art, rather than words.  God is the greatest artist who expresses his loving creation in color.  Come and do the same.  Learn a new way to express your experience of God.  Led by Jill Snyder.  Donation: $20, materials included.

THE 12 STEPS
A PATH TO RECOVERY
         
8 Thursdays     9:00 – 10:30 AM

            October 5            January 11        April 12
            November 9        February 8        May 10
            December 7        March 8

The 12 Steps are for all of us, as we all have attachments and addictions and we all desire freedom from them.  This Program will take us through the traditional 12 Steps that teach us to rely on God as our Liberator from our unhealthy habits.  We will also use The Recovery Bible and accompanying workbook to help us pray with scripture related to each Step.  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: $25 for the books and a Love Offering for each session.


THOMAS KEATING AT HIS BEST
         
8 Thursdays     11:00 AM – 12:30 PM

            October 5             January 11         April 12
            November 9         February 8          May 10
            December 7         March 8

Trappist Monk, Fr. Thomas Keating, is probably the greatest teacher of prayer and spiritual master of our time.  He has practiced and taught contemplative prayer like no other.  We are going to receive his instruction through his recent video series.  Fr. Keating’s wisdom, depth, humility and intimate relationship with God will strengthen and encourage us as we continue our journey during our troubled times.  We will conclude each session with 20 minutes of contemplative prayer.  Donation: $175, includes The Daily Reader for Contemplative Living by Fr. Keating and The Heart of Centering Prayer by Cynthia Bourgeault.  If you can, make a day of it by attending the St. John of the Cross series at 1:30 PM.


PRAYING WITH GESTURES
       
6 Thursdays                      6:00 – 7:30 PM
       
           October 5, 12, 19              November 2, 9, 16

First, we learn to be attentive to our own life-giving breath.  Then we become still and stilled so as to experience the life-giving Holy Spirit within.  Then we learn to move gently, with flexibility and grace, so that in 90-minute sessions, we are refreshed in body, mind and soul.  Led by Valerie Smith.  Donation: $60.


UNCEASING PRAYER
THE WAY OF THE PILGRIM
           
Friday, October 6        9:30 AM – 2:00 PM

Life is above all, a pilgrimage!  Most of us find ourselves praying on the run, pleading for help as we move about frantically from one urgent task to the next.  During this retreat we will follow the advice of the pilgrim in the classic “The Way of the Pilgrim” whose mastery of the Jesus Prayer fulfilled his desire for unceasing prayer.  We will also view “The Way,” a film depicting the conversion experience of 4 pilgrims walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain.  I am hoping that this retreat experience will quench our thirst for prayer and help each of us on our life’s pilgrimage to peace, healing and union with God.  Donation: $30, includes book, lunch, movie & popcorn!

FRIDAY NIGHT AT THE MOVIES
THE SHACK
           
Friday, October 6        6:00 – 9:00 PM

After a light pizza and salad supper, we’ll view The Shack.  We will leave time at the end for discussion and comments on this inspiring film on forgiveness, healing, and the interaction of the Trinity in our lives.  Popcorn provided!  Donation: $20, includes supper.

THE ARTIST’S WAY:
DISCOVERING & RECOVERING YOUR CREATIVE SELF
           
13 Mondays    9:30 – 11:00 AM

            October 9          December 11      March 12
            October 23        January 8           March 26
            November 6      January 29         April 16
            November 20    February 12        April 30
                                       February 26

The spiritual path to higher creativity is an exciting journey for those who desire to cooperate with God’s liberation of their creative energies.  Come to know the great dynamic of creativity that is God’s gift to you through our study of Julia Cameron’s classic on creative living, The Artist’s Way.  Donation $150, includes book.  Led by Jill Snyder.


TUESDAY MORNING SABBATH TIME
FINDING GOD IN CREATION
           
Tuesday, October 10   9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

We will enter into this retreat by praying together St. Francis’ Canticle of the Sun to set the tone for the morning.  The rest of the time is yours to enjoy the natural beauty of Francis House by using the labyrinth, the portiuncula (our outdoor chapel), and the woods for your meeting places with God.  Do you need some time away with yourself and God?  How about taking a Tuesday Morning Sabbath?  Led by Jill Snyder. A delicious lunch follows.  Donation: $20, includes lunch.


CLASSICS ON CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER
         
9 Tuesdays    6:30 – 8:30 PM
            
            October 10         January 9         April 10
            November 7        February 6       May 8
            December 5        March 6           June 5

Grow in the practice of contemplative prayer by coming to these monthly sessions.  The evenings include two 20-minute contemplative prayer periods.  We will also view a 20-minute segment of Fr. Thomas Keating’s DVD series, Opening to the Presence of God and engage in good spiritual reading on contemplative prayer between sessions. This year we will use The Heart of Centering Prayer, by Cynthia Bourgeault, and The Divine Dance, by Richard Rohr, OSF for our reading between sessions. Donation: $175, includes both books.


PERSONAL RETREAT DAY
         Wednesday, October 11    9:30 AM – 2:30 PM


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.  Donation: $10; $40 with spiritual direction.  Please bring a bag lunch.


SPIRITUAL EXERCISES OF ST. IGNATIUS
RETREAT IN EVERYDAY LIFE
         
8 Wednesdays 3:00 – 4:30 PM
           
            October 11         January 10        April 11
            November 8       February 7        May 9
            December 6       March 7

If you need or desire a retreat but simply cannot get away, please give yourself the gift of this retreat that invites you to pray through the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius using two Jesuit resources: The Ignatian Adventure by Kevin O’Brien, for our prayer and The New Spiritual Exercises by Louis Savary as complementary reading.  We will meet monthly for sharing and input on the next month’s prayer.  This is a wonderful way to experience the Spiritual Exercises. Donation: $175, includes both books.


IGNATIAN STUDY OF DISCERNMENT
         
8 Wednesdays 5:00 – 6:30 PM

            October 11         January 10         April 11
            November 8       February 7         May 9
            December 6       March 7

Our Discernment study will continue using Elizabeth Liebert’s The Way of Discernment and Discernment: Reading the Signs of Daily Life by Henri Nouwen.  We will further our practice of discernment with an in-depth study of Examen, to enhance our awareness of God’s presence and action in our lives and grow in attentiveness of our daily response in the midst of our busy lives.  Donation: $200, includes books.


STUDY OF ST. JOHN OF THE CROSS
         
8 Thursdays     1:30 – 3:30 PM
           
            October 12         January 11       April 12
            November 9       February 8        May 10
            December 7        March 8

John of the Cross is all about love, not asceticism or annihilation as popularly believed.  We continue our study of St. John, this year using Iain Matthew’s The Impact of God and Ruth Burrow’s Ascent to Love, my two favorites.  If your life with God is looking for a boost, please come.  We end with 20 minutes of centering prayer.  Donation: $175, includes books.  If you can, make a day of it by attending the Thomas Keating series at 11:00 AM.


FRIDAY MORNING RETREAT
A YEAR OF GRACE AND PRAYER
            8 Fridays          9:15 AM – 12:00 PM
           

            October 13         January 5         April 6
            November 3       February 2        May 11

            December 1       March 2

Is God inviting you into a deeper relationship at this point in your precious life?  Do you desire to enhance or enlarge your experience of prayer?  Are you able to come to Francis House one Friday morning each month?  I so hope you can and will, as this monthly program will be rich in grace.  We will focus on a different kind of prayer each month and you will receive materials and/or books to help you practice and enjoy it for the month.  We will also include two 20-minute centering prayer periods and some quiet time for reflection within this morning retreat.  Donation: $225, includes all books/materials.


SPIRITUAL READING GROUP
         
8 Fridays          6:30 – 8:30 PM

            October 13         January 5         April 6
            November 3       February 2        May 11
            December 1      March 2

Good spiritual reading is a must for spiritual growth. Companions on the journey help with the practice of this spiritual exercise.  This will be fun as well as fruitful.  Can you devote one Friday night a month to this pursuit?  As usual, we will feast on a variety of spiritual gems.  Donation $225, includes all books.


LIVING CONTEMPLATIVELY
         8 Saturdays     9:15 AM – 3:30 PM
            
            October 14        January 6          April 7
            November 4       February 3        May 12

            December 2       March 3

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.  Tuition: $325


PIVOTAL PLAYERS
LITURGY, DINNER AND A FILM
           
Saturday, October 14  5:00 – 8:00 PM

After liturgy and dinner, we will view one segment of Pivotal Players, a multi-part film series by Bishop Robert Barron, that illumines a handful of saints, artists, mystics and scholars who not only shaped the life of the church, but changed the course of civilization.  Looking for a night out? Tonight’s film features St. Thomas Aquinas.  Limited to 12 people.  Register early.  Donation: $25


MORNINGS WITH MERTON
DELIGHT IN THE BEAUTY OF GOD’S CREATION

          3 Mondays      9:00 – 11:00 AM
            

              October 16    November 13       December 4

Open your eyes, ears and hearts to God’s glory in nature.  Let God catch you by surprise with His creation.  No day is ever the same when we are aware of God’s gifts.  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: $60, includes book

LEARNING TO DISCERN BY LISTENING TO YOUR BODY’S WISDOM
         
8 Tuesdays      9:15 – 11:30 AM

            October 17         January 16       April 17
            November 14     February 13      May 15
            December 19      March 13

Our bodies have a certain wisdom in them that, if we learn to listen, can be invaluable in discerning what is real and from God.  Our bodies know the truth.  Our bodies carry within them all that we have ever experienced.  All are welcome as we learn to pay attention to the God-given wisdom contained within our very selves.  This practice is sometimes called Bio-Spiritual Focusing, that is, finding the Spirit at work in your body.  Donation $175, includes book.


SUPERVISION FOR SPIRITUAL DIRECTORS
         
8 Tuesdays      12:30 – 2:00 PM

            October 17         January 16         April 17
            November 14     February 13        May 15
            December 19     March 13

We meet monthly for on-going prayer, supervision and support as we continue our ministry of spiritual direction.  We will use Looking Into The Well by Maureen Conroy, RSM to strengthen our supervision skills.  Donation: $200


FRIENDS OF ST. TERESA OF AVILA
FIRE WITHIN

            8 Wednesdays 9:00 – 11:00 AM

            October 18         January 17        April 18
            November 15      February 21      May 16

            December 13      March 21

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.  Each session will also include 20 minutes of contemplative prayer and part of a video on Teresa’s Interior Castle.  We will read Thomas Dubay’s Fire Within between sessions.  Donation: $175, includes book.  If you can, stay for the Thérèse Series below on the same days.  In between the two sessions those who wish will view the video series on St. Teresa of Avila’s life.  I hope you can stay!

DELVING INTO THE DEPTHS OF
THÉRÈSE OF LISIEUX

            8 Wednesdays 1:00 – 2:30 PM

            October 18          January 17       April 18
            November 15      February 21      May 16

            December 13      March 21

Thérèse is the best spiritual director anyone could have!  If your soul is hungry for solid food, and you have a desire to deepen your relationship with God so that God is really at the center of your life, please come.  We will use The Gospel According to St. Thérèse, a newly released book by Joseph Schmidt, FSC, and Thoughts of St. Thérèse  for these 8 sessions.  These two books complement each other.  We will have a wonderful year with Thérèse.  Donation: $175, includes books and materials.  If you can, make a day of it by attending the Teresa of Avila series from 9:00 – 11:00 AM.

EVENINGS WITH TEILHARD
         3 Wednesdays             6:30 – 8:30 PM

            October 18      November 15      December 13

Enjoy this 3-part series on the spirituality of Teilhard!  He lived his life in union with Christ found at the heart of all creation.  Donation: Love Offering

TEILHARD READING GROUP
           
8 Fridays          1:00 – 2:30 PM

            October 20         January 5           April 6
            November 17     February 2         May 4
            December 15     March 2

Our study of Teilhard continues this year with the help of Ursula King’s Christ in All Things and then a return to Teilhard’s Divine Milieu.  Please join our lively discussions about Teilhard’s vision of God’s plan for the ongoing evolution of creation into full union with God. Donation: $175, includes book.​


SILENT DIRECTED RETREAT WEEKEND
            7:00 PM Friday to 1:00 PM Sunday
            October 20 – 22        

Due to the frantic pace of contemporary life, it is essential for our spiritual and physical health to take time to pray.  A weekend directed retreat offers you the opportunity to experience the graced rhythm of life in which silence and rest restore your body and God revives your soul.  Liturgy, spiritual direction and optional contemplative prayer periods are included.  Please register early.  These fill quickly. Donation: $130/$50 non-refundable deposit with registration.


SSJ ASSOCIATES
           Sundays           2:00 – 4:00 PM


           October 22           January 21           April 22

           November 19       February 25         May 20                                                                                 March 18
   

All SSJ Associates please come!  We will continue our study of SSJ Spirituality in order to take the charism of unity and reconciliation into our beloved world, which is in such great need of love.  Come to as many as you can.


LETTING GO
EVERY SEASON BRINGS A CHANGE
            Wednesday, October 25         9:30 AM – 1:00 PM


"Leaves don't drop, they just let go and make a place for seeds to grow.  Every season brings a change; a seed is what a tree contains. To die and live is life's refrain.” (Carrie Newcomber) Autumn leaves, letting go, living fully into this mysterious pattern of our life journey is the focus of our day of reflection, prayer and sharing.  Using nature as our guide, we will have an opportunity to enter more consciously into the hidden transformation that God evokes in us as we respond to the subtle invitations of God to join with creation in letting go.  Led by Joann Caramanico.  Donation: $20, includes lunch.

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."

October 2017

Francis House of Prayer

TrenTON DIOCESAN SPIRITUAL CENTER