Once a year, the Oblates of our monastery gather from far and near for a day-long retreat. The topics vary widely. Last year, the conference was devoted to “What Matters in the Spiritual Life” while the year before, Oblate Steve O’Neil (now of blessed memory) and Sister Mary Susan gave presentations about the way they have lived and been influenced by the Rule of Benedict.
Sister Edith planned a different approach for this year’s topic, Persistent Prayer. “How foolish to spend a day talking about prayer,” she said during the introduction, “and not do much of it.” The day took on a rhythm: hear a little about a particular type of prayer, followed by a time to actually practice it. The Oblates had time for group lectio or Centering Prayer, to practice contemplation through art and the contemplative gaze, through manual labor in silence, and in some other prayer charisms.
The Persistent Prayer posting Oblate blog includes all the slides and a video presentation with Fr. William Meninger that was the big hit of the day.
Anyone interested in becoming an Oblate should contact Sister Edith at firstname.lastname@example.org .