We recently returned from our main SPES retreat, around half way through our year. On a cold Sunday afternoon we all packed up and headed back down to Whitstable for a week long silent retreat!
The retreat was held at the Southwark vocations centre run by Fr Stephen Langridge, and our retreat was led by Fr Richard Aladics of Leeds diocese.
The first morning we awoke to snow! And a lot of it, even the beach 5miutes down the road was covered with the white stuff. We were told how the main structure of the retreat would go; 2 conferences a day led by Fr Richard, Mass and a Holy hour and in the evenings Compline; in-between these times we were asked to remain in silence, (with the exception of meal times) we were able to go for walks down to the beach, in to the old town, read, reflect, reflect on Scripture and just be with God. ‘Who am I Lord?, Who are you?’
The silence was challenging at first, as it is something we are not used too, I often caught myself pacing around the kitchen for no apparent reason, but after the first couple of days the silence became very comforting, a great sense of peace can be found and a real self-awareness and realisation of our dependence upon God in the silence.
We all loved it!! And now are all submerged back into busy, busy London; but not without a new found sense of inner peace and knowledge that we are able to turn to God in solitude and find rest in him.