The 2015 Western Pennsylvania Retreat in the Benedictine tradition at the Saint Vincent Archabbey was hosted by the Pittsburgh Region from October 28 to November 1.
Rev. Boniface Hicks who is a U.S. delegate for the cause for the canonization of Blessed Karl of Austria, served as retreat master. Father Boniface reflected upon the life and works of Blessed Karl, a Knight of the Order, for the theme of the retreat. Making the connection of Blessed Karl’s example to today’s message from Pope Francis, Father Boniface said:
"Pope Francis has been calling us to faithfulness in suffering, cultivation of Christian family life, care for the poor, and social responsibility. We can find an exemplary witness of these teachings in the Last Emperor of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, who was also a Knight of Malta, Blessed Karl von Habsburg. Blessed Karl, husband to the Servant of God, Empress Zita of the house of Bourbon-Parma, and devoted father of their eight children, has much to teach us about Christian family life, trust in divine Providence, making our suffering redemptive, caring for the poor and being socially responsible in our exercise of civil power. In this retreat, we will take lessons from the Knight of Malta, Blessed Karl of Austria, especially as they illustrate the pontifical magisterium of Pope Francis."
Attendees came from the Pittsburgh and Washington, DC regions and from Toronto, Canada.