For Christians, the Lenten season is meant to be one of prayer and contemplation. Finding time for those activities, however, can be difficult.
The Hillsdale College Catholic Society has found a way to aid students in their endeavor to make the most of their Lenten sacrifices. The Women’s Lenten Retreat will be held in the Mauck Solarium on the morning of Saturday, February 24th. Freshman Michaela Peine and sophomore Sarah Becker have designed it to be a short but meaningful time.
“It’s pretty short,” Peine said. “We wanted to keep it really doable. It’s really casual. Our idea with the retreat is to create an event where people could just come and prepare for lent.”
Becker, who is on the Catholic Society Women’s Outreach Board, says the retreat is designed to be a welcoming atmosphere for the Christian women of campus.
“We’ve been trying to build women’s community on campus especially among Catholic women,” Becker said. “But I think even more broadly than that Christian women. We’re opening it up to Catholic and non-Catholic women. We just want it to be an opportunity for people to have an environment where they can encounter the Lord and not feel a lot of strict requirements to be there, where they can just come and have a lot of time to just pray individually with the Lord.”
Peine is working to get a large amount of women from a variety of different backgrounds.
“We’re trying to invite a huge degree of girls, girls from every class, from sororities, from independent groups, from athletic groups,” Peine said. “So for it’s been really successful. We’ve had a ton of girls RSVP from all over the place. The first part of the retreat, we’re just gonna have a little bit of mingling so people can get to know each other.”
The retreatants will be praying together, attending brunch up the hill, and participating in some praise and worship.
“Elizabeth Luea is coming in to lead worship and give a short talk in the morning,” Becker said. “There will be brunch together and then in the afternoon Father Dave will be here for confessions. There will also be time for personal prayer and then at the end we’re hoping to wrap up and just have people share something they took away from the retreat or something they want to work on just to build that community.”
Junior Rosemary Pynes says she looks forward to a peaceful and fruitful morning during the retreat.
“I was attracted to how it is chill and laid back but also a space where I can reflect on my faith.” Pynes said. “I like retreats but sometimes so many talks and things like that can be overwhelming. It’s more like a chill retreat with time to reflect and pray, so I’m excited for that.”
For those unsure, Peine wants them to know that the retreat is low-key and low intimidation.
“Bring a friend and just come,” Peine said. “If you feel like you don’t know anyone, bring a friend and just come. We’re hoping that it will be very low on intimidation. And also, I would really encourage people to just take a break in the midst of their really busy lives and just give this time over to God so that their Lent can be really intentional.”
The Women’s Lenten Retreat will be held on February 24th from 9:45am to 2pm. RSVP to Michaela Peine at firstname.lastname@example.org.