Stirring the Ashes of HopeFall Retreat
Sponsored by the Victorious Missionaries

Friday, October 21 – Sunday, October 23, 2022
Begins with dinner at 6 p.m. on Friday – Ends with lunch at 11:45 a.m. on Sunday
National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows, Visitors Center – Belleville, IL

The poet Antonio Machado has a wonderful poem in which he says, “I thought my fireplace extinguished / and I stirred the ashes / They were warm to the touch.”  Periodically, we need to stir the ashes that have accumulated in our inner lives.  Using image, poetry, word, and music, this retreat aims to help us re-ignite our hope and our sense of the sacred so that we can once again feel the heat of courage, stare down our fears and maintain a contemplative calm no matter the chaos that surrounds us.

Presenter:  Judith Valente
Judith Valente worked as a journalist for The Washington Post, and later The Wall Street Journal.  She also reported on faith and values for the PBS-TV news program, Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly and for Chicago Public Radio.

In 2018, she devoted herself to spiritual writing and guiding retreats.  Judith is the author of several books springing from her interest in contemplative spirituality, including Atchison Blue:  A Search for Silence, A Spiritual Home and A Living Faith, and How to Live:  What the Rule of St. Benedict Teaches Us About Happiness, Meaning and Community, which applies the ancient wisdom of the Benedictine Rule to today’s world.

In addition to writing and reading poetry, Judith enjoys being in nature, traveling, reading books by Thomas Merton and other mystics, and cooking, especially Italian meals.  She and her husband have been married 17 year and live in Normal, IL when they are not in Italy.

The Victorious Missionaries provide spiritual support for people with disabilities or chronic illnesses and those who want to share their journey.  We warmly invite you to take this opportunity to rediscover your sense of the sacred.

For everyone’s safety, we ask that all attendees be fully vaccinated.

Price for the weekend:  $175 (Includes six meals, two nights lodging, snacks and handouts)
If commuting:  $115      Sat. & Sun.:  $100      Sat. only:  $70 (Includes lunch and dinner)
Please note:  A $50 deposit must be made by September 30 to hold your reservation.
Deposit is non-refundable.

We have round-the-clock attendant care.  If you require help taking prescription medications/injections, you must bring written directions signed by your physician.

Printable Registration Form