DYM Advent Retreat: Silent in His Love

DYM Advent Retreat: Silent in His Love

About the retreat

Advent is a time of waiting for the Lord. St Bernard taught that we ought not to think of just one coming of the Lord, through the Incarnation, but a threefold coming: the first was at the stable in Bethlehem; the last will be when Christ comes again in glory in the fulness of time; and between those two lies another, the hidden and interior coming of Christ into the human heart, to dwell within us and there to make his home.

Advent prompts us to reflect about how we wait for all three of these comings of the Lord. When we wait we are conscious of what we lack. It can increase our expectation and longing. But waiting can also generate disappointment, and doubt. The one for whom we wait might not come. Why is it taking so long? Why is God silent when we long for him most?

Over the course of this retreat we will explore these questions from the vantage point of different moments in salvation history. We will look at the waiting of the prophets and patriarchs, and the experiences of the apostles who lived with Christ on earth. We will also reflect on what followed, the concentration of Christian hope in the Church’s liturgical and devotional life, and finally the specific questions raised by our own day in 2023. As well as talks and meditations, there will be time for adoration and confession, and we will attend the Divine Office and Mass with the monks of Douai Abbey.

Who is it for?

The retreat is for any students and young professionals (18-35).

Date and Timings

Friday 15th – Sunday 17th December

The retreat will begin with vespers (evening prayer) at 6pm on the Friday and conclude after lunch on Sunday.

How to get there

Douai Abbey is a monastery of monks of the English Benedictine Congregation, under the patronage of Saint Edmund, King and Martyr, located outside Reading.

The nearest rail station is Midgham, a short taxi ride or 25 minute walk from the Abbey. If you are travelling by car and have space to offer a lift to others let us know. It may also be possible to arrange lifts from the station.

More information about how to reach the Abbey can be found on their website here:

Booking information

The retreat costs £60 for students and the unwaged and £120 for wage-earners. If you would like to attend but have financial difficulties for any reason please contact us. Bookings must be made by Friday 1st December. The full amount must be paid before your space is confirmed.

To receive the booking form, and if you have any further questions, please email us:

Br John: or Br Jerome:

Br John Bernard, raised a Catholic by an English father and Dutch mother, first encountered the Dominicans at Blackfriars while studying Classics at the University of Oxford, and entered the noviciate in 2018. An attraction to religious life initially grew out of time spent working with the Missionaries of Charity, which then crystallised into a Dominican vocation through a desire to integrate the contemplative life with preaching and study. Based on his recent reading, he looks forward to delving further into St John of the Cross and the Carmelite mystics, as well as combining his preaching vocation with a love of the outdoors.

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