A Retreat for Expectant Mothers


Editor’s Note: I’m so happy to introduce a wonderful Catholic mom, Carla D’Rozario, who shares with us today about an upcoming retreat for expectant mothers. This looks like a wonderful opportunity for spiritual and emotional nurturing! Learn more about the retreat by contacting Carla at carla.drozario@gmail.com. LMH

A Retreat for Expectant Mothers

Saturday, October 8, 2011, Holy Spirit Retreat Center

What is a spirituality of motherhood? This is the guiding question for our retreat. The answer cannot be found in books, although Scripture and other sources from the Wisdom tradition provide points from which we may enter the journey. Only you yourself can answer this question, from within your own experience of motherhood. A one-day retreat offers pregnant and adoptive mothers-to-be the opportunity to reflect together on your call and response to motherhood, and invites you to stay with and honor your experiences of expectant motherhood. The retreat will be a gathering of the diverse dimensions of women’s experiences, emotions, and intuitions: a holding place where you can make meaning of your life. Women who already have children, as well as first time mothers, are welcome to participate. The content is geared toward women with some understanding of Christian spirituality and Scripture and some lived experience of God. The retreat aims to draw out your own spirituality of motherhood by addressing two fundamental, two-fold questions: How have I experienced or am I experiencing the call to motherhood, and how am I moved to respond? Where is God in my waiting, and how am I being transformed in the space of waiting? These questions are broad enough to allow you to be addressed by particular questions that may surface for you in the course of your reflection and sharing. The retreat will utilize each participants own salvation history; readings from Scripture, writings in Christian spirituality, poetry, and prayer; ritual; and images to help you articulate how you are being transformed in your time of expectancy. The Gospel of John, chapter one, verses 35 through 39, frames the movements of the retreat around call, response, and dwelling: The next day John again was standing with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he exclaimed, “Look, here is the Lamb of God!” the two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where he was staying, and they remained with him that day. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon. Jesus’ call, the disciples’ response, and the indwelling happen as congruent movements, almost indistinguishable. For the purpose of this retreat, you will be invited to first examine your call to motherhood, followed by your response to motherhood, and conclude with honoring your experience of the indwelling Christ as well as your child’s dwelling in you. The call to motherhood begins with awareness. God asks us in countless ways every day what it is we most desire. Our deepest longings—and our deepest fears—beg to be heard and seen, but too often, we go about our daily business deaf and blind. God’s first call to us is the invitation to “come and see.” The first movement invites you to notice God’s action in your world and in your life; to hear Christ saying to you, “Come and see;” to know what it is to be called by name. The second movement invites you to consider how you are responding to the call to motherhood and the invitation to journey with Christ. By reflecting on God’s dream for your life, you may become more aware of how you are being transformed in your time of waiting, and how, from this liminal space, you can freely respond to God.  The final movement offers space for you to appreciate the indwelling of Christ and the indwelling of your child. After exploring your call to motherhood—Christ’s call to “come and see”—and embarking on a transformative journey, you may savor “remaining” with Christ. The retreat will present opportunities for imaginatively entering into Scripture in a communal setting; for personal reflection using journaling or artwork; and for plenary sharing. The retreat will be held together by simple liturgy or ritual. Learn more about Copyright Carla D’Rozario, 2011


About Author

Lisa M. Hendey is the founder and editor of CatholicMom.com and the bestselling author of the Chime Travelers children's fiction series, The Grace of Yes, The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms. As a board member and frequent host on KNXT Catholic Television, Lisa has produced and hosted multiple programs and has appeared on EWTN and CatholicTV. Hendey hosted “Catholic Moments” on Radio Maria and is the technology contributor for EWTN’s SonRise Morning Show. Lisa's articles have appeared in Catholic Digest, National Catholic Register, and Our Sunday Visitor. Hendey travels internationally giving workshops on faith, family, and Catholic technology and communications topics. She was selected as an Elizabeth Egan Journalism Fellow, attended the Vatican Bloggers Meeting, the “Bishops and Bloggers” meeting and has written internationally on the work of Catholic Relief Services and Unbound. Hendey lives with her family in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Visit Lisa at www.LisaHendey.com for information on her speaking schedule or to invite her to visit your group, parish or organization.

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