Lay Centre 2021-2022 Community on retreat
Frascati - The Capuchin Franciscan house of formation, perched above Frascati in the Alban hills, just an hour’s drive south of Rome, was once again home to our first semester weekend community retreat. Jesuit Father Pino Di Luccio, a professor at the Pontifical Gregorian University, led the three days of reflection, during which The Lay Centre community reflected on the theme of hospitality, using the passage about the "Hospitality of Abraham and Sarah at the Oaks of Mamre" (Gen 18:1-15).
Just two weeks into the beginning of the academic year, the retreat weekend is a perfect opportunity to get out of the city and to learn more about each other, about our different countries and cultures. This year’s resident community hails from 13 different countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, Croatia, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Mozambique, Romania, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
“Prayer, silence, nature, and friendship were the ingredients that made this experience memorable,” said Lay Centre resident Monica Borsari.
Father Di Luccio’s insights for prayer and reflection on hospitality helped everyone to think about building community through dialogue, especially what it means to welcome somebody and to make space in our lives for the other.
The retreat days offered opportunities not only for prayer and quiet times, but also for fun, including time to enjoy the outdoors and to get to know each other better.
“I take away from this retreat three important messages: hospitality is an attitude, true hospitality is what restores us, hospitality does not exist without gratuitousness,” said Borsari.
Every day, The Lay Centre community is reminded of the message to welcome each and every person, as they enter our house, friends and strangers alike, when they pass by our chapel dedicated to the Most Holy Trinity, where a new icon depicting the "Hospitality of Abraham and Sarah at the Oaks of Mamre" (Gen 18:1-15) has place of honour.
Photos courtesy: Mirticeli Medeiros