When Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity are called to facilitate a retreat for students affiliated with a Catholic Neuman Center in the spring, it is often bitter sweet. The truth is that some students are nearing the end of an often challenging semester and others are at the threshold of completing their degrees moving on to further adventures. On April 24, 2010, Sister Mary Ann Spanjers, OSF and Sister Julie Ann Sheahan, OSF, were touched to be invited to provide reflection guides on discernment and action to UW Superior students and other young adults.
Rooted in Franciscanism and true to the liturgical timing of being in the Easter Season, focus was placed on the San Damiano Crucifix, an icon of glory and a summons to be converted and rebuild the Church. The Passion according to the Gospel of John was contemplated and all were reminded that we must struggle to maintain the good fight until we are called home to the Lord. Comfort and strength in the journey, no matter if it is in the direction of more schooling or following one’s call to serve the needs of others in another environment is found in the Eucharist, the pilgrim’s meal.
The celebration of the Eucharist at Christ the King Cathedral within walking distance of the Neuman Center, adoration in the Eucharistic Chapel, personal and group prayer, as well as simple meals fostered union of body and soul among the community of retreatants. Father Andrew Ricci and Meghan and Brett Jones also assisted with the weekend planning.