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Nurturing Spiritual Growth


Relaxing environments in which to rest, reflect and be renewed in body and spirit. “Spirituality is a project of life-integration which means that it is holistic, involving body and spirit, emotions and thought, activity and passivity, social and individual aspects of life. It is an effort to bring all of life together in an integrated synthesis of ongoing growth and development." ~Sandra M. Schneiders, I.H.M.

Often the beauty and diversity of creation can soothe our spirits and remind us of our connections to the universe. This video creates a space in time for us to stop and bring that larger world into our hearts and minds. 

Magnificent (Do you Believe It?) 

{courtesy of Valeriano Geloca}

Stillpoint House of Prayer

This special house of prayer –-a presence, a place, an experience— is located on the Madawaska River in the countryside near Calabogie, Ontario. It provides five completely equipped private rooms for persons coming for a retreat or for days of recollection, renewal, or rest. The grounds are very spacious, beautifully landscaped, and are inviting for walks or time spent out in Nature. There are also trails for long walks, and swimming in the river is available during the summer months.

An atmosphere of silence, prayer, and seclusion pervades the whole complex as well as the grounds. There is a chapel, and also a well-equipped library of books, tapes, and videos. Our resident staff provides hospitality as well as spiritual direction for the guests who come from many different faith traditions.

Stillpoint House of Prayer is committed to enabling persons of all faiths to grow in relation to self, God (Higher Power), others and all of creation by offering a quiet space to “Come and rest a while”. (Mark 6:31).  Stillpoint is nestled on the banks of the Madawaska River and is immersed in a contemplative atmosphere.  There is the availability of spiritual direction and the support of a praying community. Visit the website.

The Upper Room Home of Prayer

The Upper Room recognizes the need and the search in many faith-filled persons
who are restless to experience “more” in their relationships with God, each other and all of creation.

Houses of Prayer are not exclusively for professed religious. They are also for anyone drawn interiorly to share in the experience of those values. Thus, people availing themselves of Houses of Prayer could be lay, religious or cleric from a diversity of ecclesial affiliations and religious traditions. Some guests could be spiritual seekers without any religious affiliation. Each House of Prayer has a "core community" which provides stability, continuity and hospitality.

We have lived with this Pentecost Icon for some 28 years now. It speaks to the core of our contemplatively active ministry. Mary sits among the disciples and welcomes all to come into The Upper Room – and be still— be silent – in expectant listening for the voice of the Spirit to be heard. Each of the apostles, in all their uniqueness and diversity, receives a ‘scroll’— a message, some word, to be shared with others. The man standing in the darkened doorway represents the waiting world. We today listen for Spirit discernment and then go forth and proclaim some GOOD NEWS. Since 1984, The Upper Room, a Home of Prayer, a School of Prayer and a Community of Prayer sponsored by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peterborough, has been offering retreats, spiritual direction, formation programs and teachings in the Ottawa diocese. Since 2005 we have served in the Gatineau and Cornwall dioceses. In 2011, we opened a retreat place in Pembroke diocese. Visit their website. 

Villa St. Joseph Retreat and Ecology Centre

O Hidden Life! vibrant in every atom; O Hidden Light! shining in every creature; O Hidden Love! embracing all in Oneness; May each who feels as one with the Spirit, know they are also one with every other. (adapted from a meditation by Annie Besant)

Villa St. Joseph Centre is owned and staffed by the Sisters of St. Joseph. The historic building, in Cobourg, Ontario, is situated on the shores of Lake Ontario and has a long and varied history. We value holistic spirituality inclusive of all peoples and all the earth. We approach ministry and programs from an ecological, inter-faith and justice-oriented stance. Our Centre offers a quiet, relaxing environment in which to rest, reflect and be renewed in body and spirit.

Spiritual Ministries Network

A London neighbourhood based ministry of Sisters and Associates providing a network of opportunities to nurture spirituality in southwestern Ontario through:

  • Facilitating links and referrals to practitioners working in healing ministries such as spiritual direction, bereavement, massage therapy, family counselling, parish nursing, Reiki, and more.
  • Initiating activities, events, workshops and assisting local communities and parishes to design adult spiritual development events.
  • Providing information and links to online resources and retreat opportunities.
  • Providing speakers, lecturers and retreat directors on a range of topics related to adult spiritual growth.
  • Welcoming partnerships with others, adding our resources, as we are able, to joint projects and initiatives which address adult spiritual growth.
    Contact the Spiritual Ministries Network.

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Copyright 2013. Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Canada.