Francis House of Prayer

TrenTON DIOCESAN SPIRITUAL CENTER

REJOICE AND BE GLAD
POPE FRANCIS SPEAKS AGAIN

     Thursday, September 6          9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Everyone loves Pope Francis. He’s done it again. He has written another Apostolic Exhortation, a letter to the whole Church and to each of us, inviting us to the joy of committed gospel living. There is no better way to start the year at Francis House than with this heartfelt message of encouragement and direction from our Pope. What a lovely and fruitful way to spend a September morning. Donation: $25, includes lunch and book.


INVITATION TO INTIMACY
INTRODUCTION TO CENTERING PRAYER

     Sunday, September 9          1:00 – 3:30 PM

What is centering prayer?  Is God calling me to this form of prayer?  Do I have a desire for a quiet mind, a peaceful soul, union with God, and to simply be in God’s Presence loving the God who loves me?  Can centering prayer really change me?  Is the fact that I can’t be still or quiet my mind a problem?  Come and see. Desire is everything, God’s desire! It is well worth the afternoon.  Donation: $25.


PERSONAL RETREAT DAYS
     Wednesdays     9:30 AM – 2:30 PM
     

     September 12     December 5     April 3
     October 10         January 16        May 1
     November 7       February 13     June 5
                                 March 20

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.

VESPER TIME
     Thursday, September 13          6:30 – 8: 30 PM

This is for the 65+ who are in or approaching the last third of life.  Sometimes God saves the best until last!  We will consider the many blessings and the many challenges of this graced time in life.  We will pray over God’s call to us now to live well, to be an example to others, and to participate in this aging process with graciousness and hope.  Come join with others who are “in the same boat,” so together we can move forward with clarity and purpose.  Donation: $30, includes Vesper Time, a book perfect for the occasion!


A MENTOR FOR A MONTH
     Sunday, September 16          9:30 AM – 12:30 PM

In our Catholic tradition, we have such a rich heritage of holy people.  We call them saints, mystics or mentors.  I’m going to invite you to choose one from among the following spiritual giants as your mentor for the month.  Which one would you like as your companion?  Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Catherine of Siena, Thomas Merton, Ignatius of Loyola, Thérèse of Lisieux, Hildegard of Bingen, Francis of Assisi and even Pope Francis?  If your life with God needs just a little lift and you need a little inspiration, please come to this Sunday morning retreat.  Donation: $25, includes book. 


FROM ANGER TO COMPASSION
THE LOVING-KINDNESS PRAYER

     Tuesday, September 18          6:30 – 8:30 PM

Sometimes stress and our overly committed lives cause a state of being on edge, agitated, dissatisfied and scattered despite our best efforts to keep everything in balance. Often the one we need the most compassion for is ourselves. The Loving Kindness Prayer is a means of both receiving and giving compassion.  God’s compassion becomes part of us and heals the hurt and anger we carry in our hearts. We will do some centering prayer too, and walk the labyrinth, time and weather permitting.  Donation:  $25, includes book.


SUNSET RETREAT
AN EVENING OF PRAYER WITH TEILHARD

     Wednesday, September 19          6:30 – 8:00 PM

Spend an evening connecting with God through the wonder of nature, the Word of God and the words of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.  God’s love and creative energy resonates through all things.  Let this time be an uplifting moment to be quietly aware of and enjoy God’s Presence. Led by Jill Snyder.  Donation: Love Offering


FRIDAY NIGHT AT THE MOVIES
A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS

     Friday, September 21          6:00 – 8:30 PM

You may have viewed this film years ago or have seen the Broadway production.  It is a wonderful story about true discipleship and the courage needed to follow our Lord closely and imitate his courage.  St. Thomas More speaks to our hearts as we travel through our challenging times….and life.  The evening begins with pizza at
​6:00 PM, movie at 6:30 PM.  Donation: $20.


THE DIVINE DANCE
      Saturday, September 22           9:30 AM – 2:30 PM

This retreat day might change your understanding and experience of our Trinitarian God. Imagine yourself being invited into a Divine Dance with the Trinity!  That might not be your usual image of being in relationship with God.  Richard Rohr, OSF, reminds us in his book The Divine Dance that God is a holy community – Father, Son and Spirit, and that we are created in the image of community, with a deep longing to love and be loved.  This book calls us to be like God, to belong to each other, to be one as God is one, and to refuse to live life in isolation.  Can you give a day to explore your life with God?  Donation:  $40, lunch and book included.

DELIGHT IN GOD
A MORNING WITH ST. HILDEGARD OF BINGEN

     Wednesday, October 3          9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

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 Doctor of the Church offers us simple ways to be more aware of God’s generous love.  Led by Jill Snyder.  Donation: $20, includes materials and lunch.


CELEBRATE ST. FRANCIS
LORD, MAKE ME AN INSTRUMENT OF YOUR PEACE

     Thursday, 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.


THOMAS MERTON ON PRAYER
     Friday, October 5          9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

My all-time favorite book about Merton is written by John Higgins, SJ.  Higgins captures the heart of Merton and the depth of his life with God, inviting us into God’s desires for us: union with God, transformation of consciousness, and contemplative prayer. If you like Merton, and are willing to give some time, I would love to share this book with you.  His sections on union with God and transformation will console your struggling soul and bring you hope and peace. Register early.  Limited to 5 persons.  Donation: $30, includes lunch and book.


THE CLOUD OF UNKNOWING
     Sunday, October 7          9:30 AM – 2:00 PM

I want to introduce you to the Cloud!  Without a doubt, The Cloud of Unknowing is the classic on contemplative prayer. It gets to the heart of your desire for God, and more importantly, God’s desire for you. It speaks of “naked intent toward God,” and God’s overwhelming attraction to you.  It’s user-friendly, not so esoteric that you can’t understand. If you’ve never read it, perhaps now is the time.  Follow the call of God!  Why not? Donation: $30, includes the book.

THE INTERIOR CASTLE
     Sunday, October 14          1:00 – 4:00 PM

St. Teresa is the master teacher of the spiritual life.  She takes us through the seven mansions of our soul as we journey into full union with God.  This journey is for all of us.  We will become acquainted with each of the seven mansions so that we can more easily recognize and follow the path as God leads us through the rooms in the castle into full union with God, the desire of our heart. The Interior Castle is a classic.  It is not hard to read or understand.  It is true nourishment for your soul!   Donation: $35, includes the book.


THE GOD-GIVEN POWER OF WHOLE FOOD
     2 Tuesdays          6:30 – 8:00 PM
       

     October 16           November 13

With all the talk about diet plans, fad foods, superfoods, GMOs, and gluten that we hear about, it’s no wonder we’re confused about what to eat!  Come learn about the best food to eat – real food that heals and nourishes us…simple, fresh, delicious, nutrient-packed foods that are easy to cook, food that comes from nature, not a factory.  Everything else is fake food that depletes energy and health.  Find out how to eat real, whole food made by God, treating your body and mind with the care that God intended.  Please come to both sessions if you can, as one builds on the other.  Presenter: Colleen McNally, Certified Integrative Health Coach.  Donation: $10 each session.


THE ART OF LETTING GO
DE-CLUTTERING AND DE-STRESSING

     Thursday, October 25          9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

The season of Autumn is our teacher.  Life provides many opportunities to let go of our attachment to power and control.  Is God calling you to practice letting go these days, to learn to accept things as they are rather than how you’d like them to be? “What God arranges for us to experience at each moment is the best and holiest thing that could happen to us.”  (Jean-Pierre de Caussade) Do you believe this? Would this belief help you to de-clutter and de-stress?   Donation: $20, lunch included.


THE IGNATIAN WAY
     Tuesday, October 30          9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

St. Ignatius too, is a teacher of prayer. He invites us to take our place within the Scripture story in what has come to be called “Ignatian contemplation.” He invites us to gather the graces of the day, in what has come to be called Examen. This morning retreat will help you be more present to God’s presence, both in your prayer and in your life.   Presenter: Ginny Lacata.  Donation: $20, includes lunch.


DAWN – DAY – DUSK – DARK
MERTON’S BOOK OF HOURS

     Wednesday, November 14            6:30 – 8:00 PM

You will receive Merton’s A Book of Hours which gathers some of the most beautiful and insightful passages in his writings arranged as prayers to be offered at dawn, midday, dusk and night hours of each day.  They are simple and elegant as is Merton at his best!  Our souls long to live in union with God.  This little book gives us a way that is brief and quite manageable for the ordinary, busy person at work in the world.  It will be a good opening for your Advent Season.  Donation: $25, includes book.


GRATEFULNESS OF THE HEART
     Tuesday, November 20            9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Gratitude heals wounds and sets our spirits free.  I’m hoping that our day on gratefulness of the heart will help each of us let go of negative attitudes and grow in serenity by developing gratefulness as a habit of the mind and practice of the heart.  What a wonderful way to prepare for the great feast of Thanksgiving!  Donation: Love Offering, lunch included.


APPRECIATING DIFFERENCES
     Wednesday, November 28            9:30 AM – 2:30 PM

Come and learn more about yourself, and others in your family and life who are important to you.  Join us for a workshop on the Myers Briggs Type Indicator™ (MBTI™) and explore your own personality and preferences, receive some tools which will help you understand and appreciate those who are different from you…and have some fun too!  Presenter: Cheryl Beth Kuchler.  Donation: $75, includes comprehensive materials and lunch.


ADVENT RETREAT DAY
LASTING HAPPINESS IN A CHANGING WORLD

     Monday, December 3            9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Advent is such a special season of grace, often lost in the shuffle of the Christmas rush!  We will travel through Advent this year with The Book of Joy.  It is a perfect companion for this busy and stressful season.  It may become first on your list of Christmas gifts for others too.  I am certain that your Advent Season will be greatly enriched by this choice.  I can’t think of a better way to enjoy this holy time!  Donation: $35, includes book and lunch.


BE BORN IN ME
MAKE MY HEART YOUR BETHLEHEM

     Wednesday, December 19            9:30 AM – 1:00 PM

This retreat morning will allow you the time and space to celebrate Christmas spiritually, as most of us do not have that opportunity on the day itself.  Spending this time with God makes a huge difference in the final days before Christmas, as you continue your preparation for the feast and will enhance your entire Christmas Season.  “I’ll hold you in the beginning, you will hold me in the end.  Every moment in the middle, make my heart your Bethlehem.  Be Born in Me.” (Battistelli) Please come.  Donation: $20, lunch included.


END OF THE YEAR RETREAT
     Monday, December 31            9:30 AM – 2:30 PM

Since God gives us life and time and is Lord over all, it seems appropriate to end the year in prayer.  Francis House offers time, space and quiet for naming the graces of 2018 and expressing gratitude to God.  The afternoon will focus on our goals, hopes and desires for 2019.    Please bring a bag lunch.  Love Offering.


SAVE THESE DATES for 2019!

45TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION
Sunday, June 9      2:00 PM
Outdoor Liturgy followed by refreshments.

BROTHER MICKEY McGRATH, OSFS
Sunday, March 3         1:00 – 4:00 PM
Renowned International Artist and Presenter

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."

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