Eparchy of Saint Maron
In the Gospel, there are many references to Jesus, sometimes with his disciples, withdrawing and taking time to pray.
Jesus went out to a mountain side to pray, and spent the night praying to God. When morning came, he called his disciples to him. (Luke 6:12-13)
The Church calls for priests to devote themselves daily to the reading and meditation of the word of God. They are to be assiduous in prayer, in liturgical celebrations and especially in their devotion to the mystery of the Eucharist. They are daily to examine their consciences and frequently receive the sacrament of penance. They are to carry out the other pious exercises of their own Church.
But it is still necessary for the priest to withdraw, perhaps with his brother priests to be quiet and to pray. For this reason, every year Bishop Gregory gathers all the priest in a quiet place to get some rest, to share in fellowship and to refresh their spiritual lives.
From 7-11 January 2019, the priests of the Eparchy of St. Maron of Brooklyn gathered at Our Lady of Florida Retreat Center in North Palm Beach, Florida for a week of prayer, conferences, and fellowship. Chorbishop Seely Beggiani, Rector Emeritus of Our Lady of Lebanon Maronite Seminary, gave the retreat and offered a series of conferences on Syriac Spirituality. Chorbishop Beggiani drew from
St. Ephrem, St. Jacob of Serugh, St. John the Solitary, and other Syriac writers to focus on a spirituality of Baptism.
Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon
The annual clergy retreat was conducted from Monday evening to Thursday afternoon January 7-11, at Franciscan Renewal Center, Scottsdale, Arizona. On Monday, January 7 following the Divine Liturgy, the Maronite Community of St. Joseph Maronite Church provided a wonderful dinner to all. This year’s retreat master, Led by his excellency Bishop A. Elias Zaidan, Bishop of Our Lady of Lebanon of Los Angeles. The priests enthusiastically participated for three days in a rich spiritual program. During the three-day retreat, the following topics were presented and discussed:
1 — “Vocation and Formation & Priests Ambassadors before God and before the people.” 2 — “Priests Students and Teachers & Priests as peacemakers.”
3 — “Priests as Alter Christus & Thanksgiving and Commission.”
The retreat provides an opportunity for the priests and deacons of the eparchy to pray together, reflect on the spiritual message delivered and to have time to gather for meals, socializing and living the unique companionship with each other.
The retreat also offers a time to take care and empty and recharge ourselves to be able to serve the communities within and outside the walls of the church. He also invited us to keep our eyes directed towards Him.
Jesus once spoke to his disciples, “Come away to a quiet place and rest awhile.” Hear the invitation once again to come away with Jesus. We will rest awhile, listen for guidance and renew our courage and compassion.