On May 21-22, 2018, LEFSA attended an annual Spring Retreat at Mariandale Retreat Center in Ossining, NY. 44 people attended.
LEFSA retreats give people an opportunity for renewal of body, mind and spirit. For 2 nights and 3 days, every participant has a private room, and all meals are provided for by the Retreat Center. We meet for several gatherings during the course of 3 days. Each gathering is facilitated by LEFSA team members and is centered around a theme. The groups provide a space for people to share and pray with each other. The beautiful grounds of the Retreat Center give an opportunity to enjoy and experience nature. The Retreat Center also offers a guided labyrinth walk and gives access to a creativity room for people to work on their own artwork.
It was Joyce’s first experience on the retreat, and she remarks:
“My favorite experience was the labyrinth walk. I was just in my little world, when we finished the walk. I felt so light, everything was lifted off of me. I really needed it. I was at peace even though it was raining throughout the walk. I also went to the prayer hut, wrote in the book, and meditated. I read some of the books in the library. There was a book there titled Prayer For People on the Go. I took a picture of it to find it online later. Since then I have been stress-free, even when I had to go to the shelter.
“I cried a lot on the retreat, I shared a lot. We talked about forgiveness, and I talked about my sister, and I finally called her and made amends. I’m at a point where I’m letting go and letting God.
“The things I decided I needed to do on the retreat, I did. I made my amends with my sister, and I got into a shelter.
I’m happy. Ever since the retreat I’m burden-free from all the stuff I was carrying.
“It was so tranquil and peaceful there, I slept like a baby, with my window having a view of the water. I was able to really connect with myself.”