‘Waiting for Jesus’: Sacred Space Advent retreat

November 22, 2023 in Featured News, News

The ecumenical online prayer website Sacred Space is offering an Advent Retreat starting on the first Sunday of Advent, 3 December 2023. The theme of the retreat is ‘Waiting for Jesus’. It finishes on the 4th Sunday of Advent, 24 December 2023, which this year happens to be Christmas Eve.

The retreat features new prayers and reflections daily, based for the most part on the scriptures of the day, namely the First Reading and the Gospel, according to the Irish liturgical calendar.

Anna Phalan, Office Administrator and Content Editor of Sacred Space, explains that the retreat can take as little as 3-5 minutes, or it could last 15-20 minutes or more, depending on how much time people have and how deeply they want to enter into prayer. “If you have the time and inclination, we would encourage you to spend as long as you can with anything that jumps out for you from the reflections or the scriptures themselves and to stay with those words, and let them settle deeply into your heart, mind, and soul.”

She also points out that those who opt to do the retreat should feel free to use it in whatever way suits them, taking notes, journalling, or staying with just one word or phrase that resonates most strongly. “You might find you would like to come back to the prayers of a previous day, and stay with that for a few days, or stay with the words or scripture of a particular day and meditate on them for as long as you like and feel you need. If you miss a couple of days, that doesn’t matter. You can either just join in at the point the retreat is currently at, or go back and catch up if you prefer,” she adds.

Anna and the Sacred Space team are inviting people all over the world to “Join the Sacred Space community as we journey together through Advent, praying each day with scripture and in the presence of the One for whom we are waiting.”

It is an opportunity for people to take a few extra minutes in their day to quietly rest in the love of God, she says, adding, “And to ponder the wonder and mystery of Jesus who comes to us as a small child: totally accessible to all, loving everyone, and showing how completely loveable and approachable our God is, He who has come down to meet us in the poverty and need of our humanity.”

Noting that Advent is the end of the natural year and the beginning of the Church’s year, she says it is a perfect time for those who might feel they want to renew their faith, hope, and love, and to reflect on their relationships: with themselves, with others, and with God, and to focus on what matters most in life.

She concludes with this blessing prayer for all who decide to join the Sacred Space online prayer community this Advent. “May this simple retreat bless each one of you who prays with it and remind you that you are part of the Sacred Space family, united in prayer with brothers and sisters all over the world. Let us remember all those suffering most deeply across the planet at this time, especially those in areas of conflict and war, and offer up our prayers for them, particularly this Advent.”

Testimonials regarding previous retreats:

“I have dearly loved using them [the retreats] each year. They have been an integral part of my Advent devotional time in the past.” – LB

“Your message restored Hope. I see now, as God helps me, I have a duty to help others. Thank you for creating this sacred program.” CH

“These Retreats have touched me in such a special way over the years, both Advent and Lent…The…image of Mary offering me the Christ Child is an example of the creative spiritual genius of you all.” – AG

Visit SacredSpace.com to take part in this year’s Advent retreat »»