Catholics between the ages of 18 and 40 are invited to attend a one-day retreat to help them discern God’s will for their lives.
“From Love, For Love: Discerning God’s Will For Me” will take place May 22 at St. Hyacinth Church, located at 63 Pulaski St. in Auburn. The retreat, cosponsored by St. Bernard’s School of Theology and Ministry, St. Mary Parish and Sts. Mary and Martha Parish in Auburn, will begin at 9 a.m. and conclude with Mass at 4 p.m.
Guest speakers will cover such topics as God’s plan for love and marriage; priesthood and religious life; chastity; emotional maturity; mental health; and the four pillars of human development.
Speakers will be Father Peter Van Lieshout, pastor of St. Peter Parish in Phelps/Clifton Springs/Shortsville and codirector of the diocesan Office of Priesthood Vocation Awareness; Matthew Kuhner, academic dean and assistant professor of systematic theology at St. Bernard’s; Michelle Kuhner, a catechist with a master’s degree in theological studies who specializes in marriage and the family; and Patrick Cayouette, a licensed master social worker.
The retreat also will include a question-and-answer session with a panel of representatives of various vocations. Some of these panelists and speakers will meet later with small groups of individuals discerning similar potential vocational paths. Retreat participants also will have time for prayer, reflection and adoration. Lunch will be provided. Masks must be worn and social-distancing guidelines must be followed.
Last year, St. Mary and Sts. Mary and Martha offered a virtual vocations retreat for young adults, but this year opted for an in-person event, according to Father Justin Miller, parochial vicar at the Auburn parishes.
“With many persons returning to social gatherings and Mass, it seemed like the right time to offer another vocational discernment event, but to bring people together in person, albeit with masks and social distancing,” he explained.
The retreat comes on the heels of the April 25 World Day of Prayer for Vocations. Organizers decided to offer the event in late May rather than April in order to give college students time to return home from out-of-town schools, he added.
“It is also a good step for us to invite persons from all around the diocese, as some parishes may have chosen to not host many in-person gatherings. Our event could be a real gift to those who don’t have many options locally,” Father Miller said.
The registration fee for the retreat is $10. Those interested in participating must register online by May 17. For more information, visit St. Mary’s website or send an email to Carlo.Stebbings@dor.org.