Spirit Center Retreats

Individual Retreat

Flexible Dates
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
St. Benedict said, “Listen with the ear of your heart.” Why? It is this type of listening that allows the hearing of divine wisdom and inspiration that guides our lives into ever-increasing fullness, peace, and joy. But sometimes the noise and blur of life make that difficult. That is why we offer you the opportunity to come to Spirit Center and listen.

A Watercolor Journey

With Pearl Maxner

March 5 - 7, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
Explore watercolor painting with step-by-step instructions on the use of color and light and capturing mood and emotion. Paint with confidence and trust God in the flowing of color in your life. For beginning to intermediate painters. All supplies provided.

Diffusions – Praying with the Desert Mothers : Ammas as Midwives of Wisdom

With Dr. Samantha L. Miller

March 13, 2024
Zoom
Looking closely at the sayings and lives of the desert saints, we think about their particular spiritual practices, what those practices lead to, and how we might imitate these practices in our own lives. Come see what our new friends can teach us about spiritual formation in this final part of our spring desert saints series!

Diffusions :: Glittering Vices

With Tim Oberholzer

March 14 - May 16, 2024
Zoom
The vices mark things we need to leave behind. That is our starting point. ... [An] adequate and effective response invokes "graced disciplines," daily rhythms of discipleship that bridge a life held captive to vice and a life that shines with beautiful virtue. -- from the Preface of Glittering Vices by Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung This book discussion will follow Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung's Second Edition of Glittering Vices: A New Look at the Seven Deadly Sins and Their Remedies chapter-by-chapter. In this 10-week journey, our group will meet via 1 1/2 hour Zoom sessions, Thursdays, 6-7:30 pm (Pacific) 9-10:30 pm (Eastern),…

Grateful Simplicity

With Julie Ferraro, Obl.S.B.

March 15 - 17, 2024
Spirit Center
Using concepts drawn from Benedictine and Franciscan spirituality, this holistic retreat will provide suggestions and insights about decluttering body, mind, and soul, shaking the dust off old ideas, and rearranging what is important, in order to move forward on a journey of gratitude, with openness and awareness that every experience, every person we meet, can teach us valuable lessons that bring us closer to God.

Centering Prayer Intensive

With Donna Kreiensieck and Marti Taylor

April 8 - 14, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
This 7 days/6 night Centering Prayer retreat provides an opportunity to deepen one’s established Centering Prayer practice by building to 4 ½ hours of prayer time at mid-week.  During the retreat, one is held in prayer by the sisters of St. Gertrude’s Benedictine community located on the Camas Prairie in Central Idaho.  The Spirit Center offers a quiet setting to support your retreat; including private rooms with baths, meals, daily prayer with the sisters and/or Eucharist, hiking trails, museum and gift shop.

Diffusions – Monastic Land Stewardship: Caring for the Earth in Troubled Times

With Jason M. Brown, Samuel Torvend, Brenna Cussen-Anglada, Douglas Burton-Christie and Sr. Carol Ann Wassmuth, OSB

April 13 - August 10, 2024
ZOOM
This webinar series will focus on exploring the perspectives of contemplative and monastic communities on the ethics of care for the land. Through both historical and current examples, the speakers will discuss the relationship between the vow of stability and sense of place, the virtue of simplicity as an environmental ethic, work and prayer (Ora et Labora) as ecological theology, and Lectio Terra as embodied spirituality. The speakers will highlight the quiet environmental justice and conservation work that is happening on monastic lands all over North America.

Discovering Your Soul Potential: A Retreat on the Breakthrough Enneagram

With Sr. Barbara Jean Glodowski, OSB

April 16 - 18, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
The Enneagram is a spiritual wisdom tradition that was widely used by the desert Elders of the Christian church along with mystics and theologians who lived during the first five centuries AD. The Hurley/Dobson Breakthrough Enneagram Retreat is a refreshingly new and easy way to learn the Enneagram.  It presents the Enneagram in the simple language of thinking, feeling, and doing, which are the three centers of intelligence we use every day.  It answers the age-old question, “why do people do what they do?” It accomplishes this goal by describing nine personality styles.  It also reveals what a person can…

Diffusions – Praying with the Desert Mothers : Ammas as Scripture Scholars

With Dr. Samantha L. Miller

May 1, 2024
Zoom
Looking closely at the sayings and lives of the desert saints, we think about their particular spiritual practices, what those practices lead to, and how we might imitate these practices in our own lives. Come see what our new friends can teach us about spiritual formation in this final part of our spring desert saints series!

The Passion of the Earth: An Eco-Spiritual Retreat

With Wendy Weiger

May 3 - 5, 2024
Spirit Center
We humans are part of a vast web of creation that sustains all life. But we’re unraveling the web. We are standing on a cusp. The choices we make will determine the course of our planet for thousands—even millions—of years to come. What will we choose? Will we join in God’s dance of hope, healing, and new creation? Or will we continue down our current path of destruction? We will consider these questions through the lens of the Passion of the Earth, a project of artwork and poetry that integrates scientific and Biblical understanding of the story of our universe.…

Contemplative Photography

With Julie Ferraro, Obl.S.B.

May 24 - 26, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
With modern cell phones able to take photos, anyone can snap pictures. What, though, do we see in those photos? This retreat will offer participants an opportunity to see – and photograph – the natural surroundings at the monastery and other sights, while contemplating the purpose of those efforts, the results, and how the spiritual journey can progress while considering the beauty being captured with digital technology. (Participants are strongly encouraged to bring their DSLR or another style camera or cell phone with a high-resolution camera.)

Rooted

With Sr. Elisa Martinez, OSB

May 31 - June 2, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
Benedictine stability is a vow to live in a particular place and with particular people for life. It is a commitment to meet challenging times with courage and steadfastness. In truth, we are all called to an "emotional stability which is the attitude of the heart that brings us to learn from life, rather than bolt from its strings" (Joan Chittister). When we rush from place to place, job to job, relationship to relationship we remain forever on the surface of life. When we put down roots we find time. We learn about ourselves and others. We grow emotionally, spiritually,…

Come to the Quiet

With Spirituality Ministry Team

June 7 - 14, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
Relax in God's presence, surrounded by natural beauty and supported by a praying community. Experience a week of silence for your heart, soul, mind, and body. Let go and listen deeply. Come To The Quiet retreatants stay in a private room with a private bathroom, receive three meals a day, and access all of Spirit Center's amenities. Included Optional Offerings: Readings and images to spark your reflection Conversations with a spiritual director Communal prayer with the sisters of the Monastery of St. Gertrude T'ai Chi body prayer with Sr. Carlotta Mid-retreat sharing Group art creation of a sand mandala

Exploring Nature’s Gifts

With Sr. Carlotta Fontes, OSB

June 27 - 30, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
“Our backyard is an abundant source of God’s gift of healing plants to us.” Discover what ancient herbal wisdom has to show us today. Learn how to identify and harvest herbs in order to make herbal teas, salves, and more. The retreat activities will take participants onto the Monastery of St. Gertrude hillside for hands-on experience.

Trust the Process

With Sr. Meg Sass, OSB

July 12 - 14, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
Change is as certain as death and taxes. Whether intended or unexpected, we experience change in subtle and dramatic ways throughout life. The Rule of St. Benedict offers regular practices in daily and seasonal rhythms to anchor us amidst these changes. The Benedictine way of life involves trusting the practices to carry us through the hard times when we feel weak and the outcome is uncertain. Using our own experience, Scripture stories, books, films, and family histories we will explore when and how we change and how we hold fast to "follow Christ more nearly" amidst the changes.

Journaling: The Sanctuary of the Heart

With Cheryl Johnson and Tim Oberholzer

July 15 - 19, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
What is sacred space?  How do you enter it?  What are you being invited into?  How will you greet the Divine shining through this transparent world? The Center for Benedictine Life at the Monastery of St. Gertrude welcomes the monastery of your heart.  Here, the quest within and the world without join hands.  Prompts of the Spirit and their counterparts in key moments, find a voice in the sanctuary of your journal, the sanctuary of the heart.  Journaling, Joan Chittister says, is an “x-ray of your soul.”  It gets beneath our facades to the bone, blood, tissue, and the spiritual…

A Sip of Silence

With Spirituality Ministry Team

July 26 - 28, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
For those unsure about drinking a full cup of silence or not able to schedule a longer time, this retreat provides a shorter version of our "Come to the Quiet" retreats. A dipper of silence may deepen your thirst for more.

Body Prayer

With Julie Ann Horras and Meredith Robbins

August 16 - 18, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
Body Prayer retreat will satisfy your need for peaceful solitude at the beautiful Center for Benedictine Life and give opportunity to experience a fulfilling way to pray with your whole BEING!

Redefining Retirement: A Spiritual Practice

With Sr. Barbara Jean Glodowski, OSB

October 22 - 24, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
Whether already retired or preparing for retirement, you can redefine the way you live into the second half of your life through an examination of the wisdom of Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi and Richard Johnson and the values of Benedictine spirituality. Explore the challenge with others on the journey.

Don’t Tell Me What To Do

With Tim Oberholzer

November 15 - 17, 2024
Spirit Center at the Monastery of St. Gertrude
People often share that they would be a good fit for monastic life, "if it wasn't for that obedience thing." What is "that obedience thing?" Why is obedience considered onerous? What about "blind obedience?" Isn't that equally problematic? Where is the virtue in obedience? Let's find out together. For St. Benedict, obedience is much more than “doing what someone tells you to do.” We will consider Benedictine obedience as listening, gift, and spontaneity. We will also look at the motivations for (or against) obedience. In the Rule, Benedict offers fear, desire, love, and conversion as motives for obedience.