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DEFINITION: A Holy Spirit Catholic Parish Retreat is a spiritual development program that's designed to lead parishioners into a personal and intimate relationship with Jesus by encouraging them to yield to the Holy Spirit and allow Him to guide and direct their lives.

The program is a modified version of the Life in the Spirit Seminar and is intended to appeal to a wide cross section of the parish community. It focuses on the Holy Spirit and the important role He plays in our spiritual life. Through inspired teachings, daily prayer and scripture reading and the action of the Holy Spirit, parishioners are drawn closer to Jesus and experience "new life" in Christ,. The program is fully Catholic, rooted in Holy Scripture and supported by teachings from the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

FORMAT: The Retreat consists of a series of teachings spread over a period of 8 weeks. One session per week with each session lasting from 2 - 2 1/2 hours. The teachings, which are given by qualified and experienced speakers, (both lay and clergy), from within and/or from outside the parish, are designed to lead participants through the basic Gospel message and increase their awareness of the action of the Holy Spirit in their lives. In addition to the teachings, attendees are given the opportunity to actively participate in the process through small group discussions.

The Retreat is organized by a committee drawn from the leadership of the various lay ministries within the parish, under the guidance of a Coordinator, who also facilitates the weekly sessions. In other words, the Retreat is a parish event, organized and run by the parish for the benefit of all parishioners. Most of the work of organizing and running the Retreat is done by the Organizing Committee so as not to impact on the Pastor's time. However, the pastor retains overall control of the process and his full and active support is essential to the success of the Retreat.

BENEFITS: To the Individual:

  1. The Retreat gives individuals an opportunity to grow in faith and to experience the Living Christ in their lives.
  2. It encourages them to yield to the Holy Spirit or as Pope John Paul 11 puts it "to be DOCILE to Him" and to invite Him to guide and direct their lives. This often results in a deeper appreciation of the Sacraments, particularly the Holy Eucharist and Reconciliation.
  3. It promotes daily prayer, Scripture reading and meditation, as well as other opportunities for spiritual growth by recommending suitable reading material, videos, conferences and educational seminars.
  4. It challenges participants to become actively involved in the various lay ministries within the parish and to become true Disciples of Christ by spreading the Good News.

BENEFITS: To the Parish:

  1. The Retreat helps to build "community" by calling together the leaders of the various parish ministries to work collectively on a parish project
  2. It encourages parishioners to use the Gifts they have received from the Holy Spirit to build up the parish and by extension, the body of Christ. The opportunity is also taken to update the list of all parish ministries, their purpose, contacts etc.
  3. As participants grow in their relationship with God, this new-found intimacy is often translated into an upsurge of volunteers within the parish as well as more faithful attendance at Mass and the Sacraments

COST: A Registration Fee ($10 - $25.00) per person is recommended to cover the cost of reading/study material, stipends for the speakers, refreshments etc. Such a fee is usually sufficient to cover all expenses, so the parish is not "out of pocket" except for providing a venue and the usual amenities - heating, lighting etc.

ORGANIZING A RETREAT IN YOUR PARISH: A Leader's Manual that fully describes how to organize and run a retreat in your parish is available by clicking on the following link. Kas and Alana, E-mail Address: cana7cana@gmail.com

The Holy Spirit Retreat a life changing experience through which parishioners continue to grow in faith and intimacy with Jesus, under the guidance and direction of the Holy Spirit.

anicross.gif Rev. Fr Liborio Amaral's appeal to all Pastor to hold Holy Spirit Retreats in their parishes . Please download letter and print here . To know more information on the St. Mary's Parish Roman Catholic Church Brampton, click here. Rev. Fr. Liborio Amaral's Celebration of Holy Daily Mass from St. Basil's Church in Toronto, Ontario, Canada click here .



"2004 - 2006"

Place Date Attendance
Holy Rosary Parish - Toronto
April, 2004
St. Anns Parish - Brampton
April, 2004
Holy Cross Parish - Georgetown
May, 2004
St. Andrews Parish - Etobicoke
May, 2004
Immaculate Conception Parish - Woodbridge
February, 2005
St. Anthony of Padua Parish - Brampton
April, 2005
All Saints Parish - Etobicoke
January, 2006
St. Clare of Assisi Parish - Woodbridge
February 2, 2006
St. Josephs Parish - Guelph
February 23, 2006
St Thomas Aquinas Parish - Toronto
April 25, 2006
St. Augustine of Cant. Parish - Toronto
May 3, 2006
St. John Vianney Parish - Barrie
October 2, 2006

"2007 -2012"

Place Date Attendance
St Thomas More Parish - Scarborough
January 23, 2007
St. Stephens Chapel (Cathedral Parish) - Toronto
February 5, 2007
St Boniface Parish - Scarborough
February 8, 2007
St Leo's Parish - Brooklin
May 2, 2007
Christ the King - Etobicoke
Sept. 27, 2007
St. Leonard's Parish - Brampton
Oct. 3, 2007
St. Christopher's - Mississauga- Fr Scott Young
October, 2008
St. Joseph's Parish - Mississauga
May, 2009
St Joseph the Worker -Thornhill
April, 2009
St Anne's Parish - Brampton - Fr Damian Ali
April, 2010
St Catherine of Alexandria Byzantine Parish - Bond Head
April, 2010
Blessed Sacrament Parish - Toronto - Fr Larry Marcille
September, 2010
Prince of Peace Parish - Scarborough
January, 2011
St Mary's Parish - Brampton - Fr Liborio Amaral
May, 2011
St Ann's - Penetanguishene - Fr John Asidorian
April, 2012
St Andrew's - Brechin - Fr Anthony Gonsalves
September, 2012
St. Joseph's Parish - Mississauga
October, 2012

"Planned for 2013"

Place Date Attendance
St Mary's - Brampton (2) (First Comm. & Conf. Parents)
January, 2013
St Marguerite D'Youville - Brampton
Guardian Angels - Orillia
St Martin of Tours - Mississauga



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Holy Spirit



Holy Spirit Manual - This manual provides detailed, step by step instructions on how to organize and run these retreats. Each manual comes with a package of pamphlets that may be re-produced to provide additional reading material for participants. Copies are available through Cana Religious Books & Gifts at cana7cana@gmail.com at C$25.00 per copy plus HST and shipping.


Daily Prayer Guide

Prayer Guide

Daily Prayer Guide - This booklet is a rich resource, used extensively throughout the Holy Spirit Retreat, as a daily prayer and meditation guide. It is designed in such a way as to encourage participants to set aside time daily to spend in prayer and thus receive the grace of the Holy Spirit in a fuller way. Copies may be ordered through - Reta Lienhardt at 519 - 743 - 2836 email rlienhardt@rogers.com or through the CCSO Bread of Life Renewal Centre at 905 - 634 - 5433 email info@breadoflife.ca