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Why Retreat?

Life is busy, stressful, frenetic.  It is hard to find the time and discipline to take time out, to pause.  If you are in your 20s and 30s, you are also in a nearly constant state of transition and facing a multitude of unanswered questions.

Our peer-led retreat experiences give the gift of the “forced pause” to  young men and women: time off to think, reflect, pray and see where God is working in their lives at that very moment.   They are rooted in the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola and invite participants to share their own lived experiences and their histories with each other through talks and small group discussions.


  • Connect with peers interested in exploring the role that faith plays in their decisions and relationships
  • Encounter God’s presence in their daily lives
  • Grow in faith, aided by practical and spiritual tools that help them navigate life’s transitions and challenges.

Ignatian Spirituality

Ignatian Spirituality invites us to encounter God in the practical, real experiences of our daily lives. Based on the teachings of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the 15th century patron saint of retreats, it promotes an understanding of God as an active, loving, and constant presence in our lives. In community with others, we respond to God’s love and come to know him through the world around us.

Seeing “God in all things,” the Ignatian contemplative strives to become a “man or woman for others,” demonstrating faith through everyday acts of love. More than just a way of thinking or belief, Ignatian Spirituality is a concrete way of life that fosters deeper prayer, offers a medium for discernment, and nurtures a commitment to social justice. It is a spirituality of the heart that recognizes the sacredness of lived experience.

Retreat Themes

Designed to meet the needs of a variety of audiences, Charis retreats can be easily adapted to reach young adults where they are.  Each retreat can be offered in a one day, overnight, or weekend format, and Charis partners continue to find innovative ways to offer meaningful retreat experiences.

Spirit @ Work

Do you ever find yourself asking, “Who is God calling me to be?  What is God calling me to do?  Am I in the right place today?  Where am I going tomorrow?”  Pope Francis urges us, “Do not bury your talents, the gifts that GOD has given you!  Do not be afraid to dream of great things!”

Connect with others experiencing similar big decisions in their life about their vocation, career, marriage, and relationships.  Encounter God in your decision-making process by reflecting on His active presence in your yesterday, today and tomorrow.  Grow to a deeper understanding of what your gifts and talents are calling you to.

o   “I was able to just take some time away from my busy work and school schedule to focus on what God was calling me to do. I really enjoyed silent reflection time.” – UGA

o   “Being in a time of transition and needing to make decisions for my future, this retreat was extremely helpful in not only illustrating the process of discernment, but creating a space to be with God and hear where I am being called.” – Deirdre, Chicago

What Next? Finding Answers with Faith

Transition (noun): the process of letting go of the way things used to be and taking hold of the way they are or will be.  Whether you are graduating from college, transitioning jobs, moving to a new city, getting married, or even having just lost a loved one, transitions in life are not always easy.  Though they can be joyous, they can also be stressful.  Though exciting, they can painful.  And though appearing transparent, they can be confusing.

Connect and share with others yearning to reflect on the changes taking place in their lives.   Encounter the ways in which God is ever present in those moments of uncertainty. Grow to find a deeper and more grace-filled understanding of how one’s faith in God is active in our journey of transition.

o   “This retreat seemed to come at the perfect time for all of us—no matter who we are, we’re all in transition and need the support of the community and faith.” –Katie, Chicago

o   Personally I was able to take a step back and reflect on a number of things that have changed recently, forcing transitions in my own life.  Being removed from situations can make it much easier to deal with them.  From the retreat, I was able to gain a perspective and peace regarding these changes by listening to the experiences and insights changed.  I also took away a renewed sense of faith and a real sense of a catholic community that I didn’t realize was in the city.  I’m truly grateful for finding more young adults with similar values. – Hillary, Jesuit Collaborative 

Christ Alive in Our Marriage

Pope Francis reminds us that, “[St. Ignatius] pointed out two criteria on love.  The first: love is expressed more clearly in actions than in words.  The second:  there is greater love in giving than in receiving.”

Connect with your spouse and other newly married couples, taking a step back from your busy lives and embracing the gift of uninterrupted time together.  Encounter the ways in which God is active and present in your journey as a married couple. Grow in your understanding of how your marriage can be a sign of hope and love in the world.

o   “This retreat gave my spouse and I the permission and courage to ask each other the importance questions of how we bring Christ to the world in and through our vocation of marriage.” – Rob, Chicago 

o   “We have attended the retreat two years in a row. It is so important to continue to grow in our relationship and this retreat has helped us to do that.” – Kathleen, Wisconsin Province

Cristo vive en nuestro matrimonio

Cristo vive en nuestro matrimonio: El Papa Francisco nos recuerda que, “San Ignacio señalo dos criterios en el amor. El primero: el amor se expresa más claro en acciónes que en palabras. El segundo: se encuentra mas amor en dar que en recibir.”

Conecta con tu esposo y otras parejas recién casadas, tomando un descanso de la vida ocupada y abrazando el regalo del tiempo junto sin interrupción.  Encuentra las maneras en que Dios actúa y está presente en su camino como pareja casada.  Crece en tu entendimiento de como el matrimonio puede ser un signo de esperanza y amor en el mundo.

Seekers' Retreat

Do you consider yourself a spiritual or religious person?  Are you searching for answers about your faith, your life, or your relationships?  Are you seeking a down-to-earth approach to your spirituality?

Connect with others seeking to answer similar questions about their lives.  Encounter the ways in which you and God have been experiencing each other in your own life’s story through the example and words of St. Ignatius Loyola.  Grow in discovering the ways in which God is present in all things and how through prayer and discernment, you can begin to answer those questions weighing on your heart.  “Seek, and you shall find.

o   “Saying my life is hectic is like saying the Atlantic Ocean is damp.  This retreat is just what I needed to take a step back.  Where vacation helps forget life, this made me very aware of it.” – SND Convington

o   “This retreat allowed me to experience God in a whole new way.  It allowed me to learn so much about myself and how to further my relationship with the Lord.” – SND Convington


¿Te consideras una persona espiritual o te importa la religión? ¿Estás buscando respuestas acerca de la fe, la vida, o las relaciones?  ¿Estás buscando una espiritualidad que funciona en tu vida cotidiana?

Conecta con otros con quien te puedes relacionar acerca de preguntas de la vida.  Encuentra las maneras en que tu y Dios se han relacionado a través de su propia historia de la vida por medio del ejemplo y las palabras de San Ignacio de Loyola.  Descubre las maneras en que Dios está presente en todas cosas y como a través de la oración y discernimiento, te puedes contestar tantas preguntas pesadas en el corazón.  “Busca y encontraras.”

Who Do You Say I Am? The Jesus Retreat

Friend.  Teacher.  Confidant.  When you think of Jesus, what comes to your mind? When Jesus thinks of you, what comes to His mind?  If you could meet Jesus today, what would you say?  What would He say to you?

Connect with Jesus and others of faith as they seek to consider who Christ is in their own life, in others, and in the world.  Encounter His humanity by walking the Gospel stories with Jesus and reflecting on your relationship with Him.  Grow in the love you share for each other and for those around you.

o   “A great invitation from Jesus to reaffirm my faith and choose to follow him more fully.” – Diocese of Charlotte

o   The Jesus retreat is an accessible means to grow in love and understanding of Christ. It draws from the relevant experience of peers to help participants recognize God’s work in their own lives. – Cristina, Diocese of El Paso

Choosing to Be Catholic

When asked, “Why are you Catholic?” have you ever found yourself simply responding, “My parents baptized me Catholic.”  “I was raised Catholic.”  “My family has always been Catholic.”

Connect with a community of individuals who want the world to be a better place, who strive to show others love.  Encounter and reflect on your faith story, as you consider what it means to be Catholic.  Grow in affirmation of why your faith, actions of love, and experience of God express why you choose to be Catholic.

“Faith is not a light which scatters all our darkness, but a lamp which guides our steps in the night and suffices for the journey. To those who suffer, God does not provide arguments which explain everything; rather, his response is that of an accompanying presence, a history of goodness which touches every story of suffering and opens up a ray of light.” – Pope Francis

o   “Retreats are always a great way to rekindle the flame of Faith. This retreat provided a number of opportunities for discussion, reflection and prayer to fuel that flame and to be reenergized to live out life as a Catholic as fully as possible. I truly value the time to get together with other young adults of the Catholic faiths, their experiences and grow together. I did not know most of the people prior to the retreat, and by the time I left, I felt like I had known a number of them for a long time. It was a very moving experience altogether and on many levels.” – Brittany, Pensacola – Tallahassee

For the Least

Are you looking to reflect upon how you respond to Pope Francis’ call to serve?

Have you had a service experience where you have encountered injustice or those living on the margins?

Join with others to:
Connect with others who are passionate about issues of justice
Encounter the Gospel and Catholic Social Teaching by reflecting on your own experiences of service
Grow in your commitment to respond to the Gospel call in your daily life

The Catholic School Teachers' Retreat

Have you made the conscious decision not just to teach, but to teach in a Catholic school?  Is your faith an integral part of your life and your career? Are you looking for a community of teachers whose connection goes beyond lesson plans?

Connect with other teachers in Catholic schools who share your passion for faith-based education.  Encounter Jesus, himself a teacher, who plays a pivotal role in your faith and the faith of your students.  Grow in commitment to following Jesus’ as a Catholic educator.

Find a Retreat

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