Nottingham Community Retreat 2019
We (13 in total) stayed in the Claret Centre at the historic Buckden Towers set in beautiful grounds with 3 chapels, a lake, ancient trees and a recreated Tudor Knot garden – and wonderful food! Arriving on Friday afternoon and leaving after lunch on Sunday, we said the daily Office together (Morning and Evening Prayer and Compline) and had Mass on Saturday and Sunday in the parish church. We had several study sessions and Lectio Divina (scriptural reading, meditation and prayer) focused on the Holy Spirit and the Trinity in the writings of St Teresa of Avila, St John of the Cross, St Elizabeth of the Trinity and St Thérèse of Lisieux, ably led by group members Sandra and Martin, with input and guidance from Heather, our Formation Director. There was also time for private prayer, reading and reflection, and to aid this Saturday was spent in silence.
Thank you to Vic for the beautiful photographs - and also for the surprise Carmelite celebratory cake on Sunday! See photoos below.
The Trinitarian Prayer of Elizabeth of the Trinity
O my God, Trinity whom I adore, help me to become utterly forgetful of myself so that I may establish myself in you, as changeless and calm as though my soul were already in eternity. Let nothing disturb my peace nor draw me forth from you, O my unchanging God, but at every moment may I penetrate more deeply into the depths of your mystery. Give peace to my soul; make it your heaven, your cherished dwelling-place and the place of your repose. Let me never leave you there alone, but keep me there, wholly attentive, wholly alert in my faith, wholly adoring and fully given up to your creative action.
O my beloved Christ, crucified for love, I long to be the bride of your heart. I long to cover you with glory, to love you even unto death! Yet I sense my powerlessness and beg you to clothe me with yourself. Identify my soul with all the movements of your soul, submerge me, overwhelm me, substitute yourself for me, so that my life may become a reflection of your life. Come into me as Adorer, as Redeemer and as Saviour
O Eternal Word, utterance of my God, I want to spend my life listening to you, to become totally teachable so that I might learn all from you. Through all darkness, all emptiness, all powerlessness, I want to keep my eyes fixed on you and to remain under your great light. O my Beloved Star, so fascinate me that I may never be able to leave your radiance.
O Consuming Fire, Spirit of Love, overshadow me so that the Word may be, as it were incarnate again in my soul. May I be for him a new humanity in which he can renew all his mystery.
And you, O Father, bend down towards your poor little creature. Cover her with your shadow, see in her only your beloved son in who you are well pleased
O my `Three', my All, my Beatitude, infinite Solitude, Immensity in which I lose myself, I surrender myself to you as your prey. Immerse yourself in me so that I may be immersed in you until I go to contemplate in your light the abyss of your splendour!
Buckden Towers and the Tudor Knot Garden
The Crypt Chapel
The Queen Katherine of Aragon Window in the lady Chapel