Prairiewoods Franciscan Spirituality Center

Introduction to Silent Retreating: April Silent Directed Mini-Retreat at Prairiewoods (in person)

Location: Prairiewoods
Time: 6:30 PM to 11:00 AM
120 E Boyson Rd
Hiawatha, Iowa

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Participate in a weekend Silent Directed Retreat to delve deeply into the healing properties of silence

Perhaps you’ve participated for years in Prairiewoods’ Silent Directed Retreats. Or maybe you have seen these advertised and considered scheduling one for yourself, but aren’t sure what a Silent Directed Retreat is. If you’ve participated in a Silent Directed Retreat, we welcome you back. If you’ve never participated in a retreat like this, we invite you to consider this question: What’s the deepest silence you’ve ever known? Silent Directed Retreats offer opportunities to enter into deep silence to sense what it feels like to awaken a quiet and palpable connection with the Source of All Being. On Saturday, you will receive direction as you and a professionally-trained spiritual director intentionally listen to the movement of the Source of All Being in your heart. (You may add an optional session of spiritual direction on Sunday, too.) Silence assists you to get in touch with feelings, thoughts and actions as you reflect, meditate, pray and rest. Silence deepens the capacity to discern, notice, sense the movement of the Source of All Being within the whole of your life. Sharing with a professional brings you clarity, deepens your commitment and accountability to the direction of your life, and offers insight into that direction. At Prairiewoods (120 East Boyson Road in Hiawatha), we try to hold any outside stimulation to a minimum so that everything—the silence, solitude, reflective activities, meals, etc.—supports your journey within. Even meals are eaten reflectively in silence. Each day supports your individual needs. Stroll woods and prairie. Sense sunset quietly turn to dusk. Journal or read, if you choose. Nap. Engage in yoga, art expression, meditation. Notice how food nourishes your capacity for silence. Explore holding the silence with creation all around you: humans, stone, tree, pond, squirrel, deer, turkey, star, moon, dawn, dusk … Is the silence simply the absence of noise? Or is it also a presence unto itself? See for yourself! Come re-establish and remember the deep connection we share with all of Creation as we listen together to the GREAT SILENCE. Take time to rest in silence, to sense its wisdom, to know its fullness as it offers you life. Author Carolyn Myss assures: “The soul always knows what to do to heal itself. The challenge is to silence the mind." This retreat will be facilitated by Leslie Schwarting. The cost is $255 and includes lodging, Saturday meals, Sunday breakfast and spiritual direction. Partial scholarships are available. For more information or to register, contact Prairiewoods at or 319-395-6700.