On March 7-11, 2022, the friars of the Provincial Delegation in Chile conducted their annual spiritual retreat at the Nuestra Señora de Quilvo Trappist Monastery for nuns in Curicó, Chile. It was a place of peace and tranquility, very suitable for prayer and meditation.
The reflections were led by Sister Claudia MUÑOS CÁCERES, former Mother Superior of the Handmaids of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. She is currently in charge of the Parish of Our Lady of Loreto in Tierra Amarilla, in the Diocese of Copiapó. The theme of the retreat was “Spiritual Discernment: Some Elements.”
Sister Claudia used Franciscan texts, the magisterium of Pope Francis and various biblical texts to affirm, among other things that the key to good discernment is to first make our hearts disposed to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit; to create an inner space; to be open and take the time necessary to perceive our deepest desires; and to explore what dwells in us and makes us happy. Then we are to build upon these certainties, to experience God as the Beginning and the End, to understand, on an emotional level, that our whole existence is founded on Him. In this way, little by little, we can get to know Jesus of Nazareth, his ways and his standards. Finally, this process of discernment and confirmation should lead us to make concrete decisions.
The friars discovered the importance of carrying out this discernment on the personal, community and Delegation level, so that they might “become more and more united to God in the love of Christ, in order to give glory to the Father in every moment of their lives” (Constitutions 36 §3).
The friars recognized and appreciated the beauty and importance of this time spent together. They took part in moments of silence, meditation, prayer and held fraternal discussions on the reflections. During the retreat, the friars also remembered to pray for the friars of the St. Maximilian M. Kolbe Friary in Kremenchuk, Ukraine; namely, Friars Petro FRANKIV, Maryan MELNYCHUK and Ryszard SKRZYPEK.
Friar Jack GINTING