Aileen Murphy RLR guided participants in ‘Being at Home with Mary’, an online retreat which included reflections on a selection of the mysteries on the Rosary, in light of our new local and global realities. It took place through Manresa Jesuit Centre of Spirituality, Dublin, from 18 to 22 May, 2020. Sr Aileen hoped that the participants might treasure all the experiences and come to know, trust and be at home with God, as Mary was.
Mrs Siobhan Murphy, a participant at the retreat, said it was a good experience to touch into Our Lady’s life especially during the month of May. There was specially-prepared video content for personal use each morning consisting of reflections on readings, sculptures and stained-glass windows. Mrs Murphy found that concentrating and meditating on Bible passages about Mary helped her to connect in a deeper way. She commented:
“Mary was always present with others as well as with the servants at Cana, at the foot of the cross and at Pentecost waiting with the apostles. She was always relating to people in a very quiet way, but with great courage, a contemplative in action I would call her.
The retreat helped me understand the role Mary had in the incarnation, in the grace story of salvation. I find I don’t always connect with Mary too much. I often go straight to the man above, but I realise that she is a guide and a support and a model for my life.
She had to endure a lot, yet she was able to be there with everybody and survive. She was gentle yet strong.”
Sr Aileen led a meditation for the group on two evenings during the week. She invited participants to engage with her and there was also an opportunity for group interaction and sharing. Mrs Murphy spoke of her experience:
“I found the meditation and sharing very good. A lot of people spoke and it was very warm, surprisingly you could feel a connection with the online group. I appreciated others’ views and we were all very much on the same train of thought. Maybe we all benefited in different ways and got different gifts from it.
There was also a poet named Gilly Fenner who came on from England, and she had composed a few poems in Manresa on retreat and they were used during the week. It was nice to meet her personally online as well.
I am mindful of Mary who trusted that she would always be cared for even in the darkness, and she was looked after. We can trust like her too, leading us further along the road to eternal life. It’s going to bring us somewhere good and we are all in this together.”
Gilly Fenner invites us, like Mary, to:
“Listen to the God within;
I am deep-down loving, longing.
In the heart space where all is free
There you will ﬁnd me.”
Manresa Jesuit Centre of Spirituality are running a series of online retreats and reflections during this time. Click here for Manresa’s website ».