The Pittsburgh Region hosted its annual retreat at the beginning of November, with more than 20 members from the region and beyond engaging in a weekend of spiritual renewal. This annual retreat is held at St. Vincent Archabbey, the largest Benedictine monastery in the Western Hemisphere, located in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, about three and a half hours from Washington, D.C.
The two retreat masters, the Rev. Tom Acklin, O.S.B. and the Rev. Alek Schrenk of the Diocese of Pittsburgh, led conferences on the themes of abandonment to divine providence and the life of our patron, St. John the Baptist. In addition to conferences, retreatants joined the monastic community for Mass and the Liturgy of the Hours.
Between conferences and prayer time, retreatants joined one another for meals and walks around the monastery grounds. These times provided an excellent opportunity for members of the Order from different regions to get to know one another better and share ideas of how better to live our charisms of tuitio fidei and obsequium pauperum.
Thanks to Father Acklin and Father Schrenk, retreat organizers Hugh Dempsey, K.M.Ob., Mike DeVanney, K.M., Tom Octave, Brother Hugh Lester, O.S.B., and the entire St. Vincent community.
(N.B. There was also a five-day retreat (Wednesday-Sunday) for members in obedience.)