“Open to me the Doors of Repentance” Retreat
Spiritual Lenten Retreat
The Fellowship of St. John the Divine at St. Elias Cathedral organized a Lenten Spiritual Retreat on Saturday April 2nd, 2016. Around 50 Youth and Adults from various Orthodox Churches in Ottawa participated.
The retreat was entitled “Open to me the doors of Repentance” and dealt with the topic of Great Lent & Repentance.
The day started with a Lenten Soul Saturday Matins service. After that, the first talk was given by His Grace Bishop IOAN CASIAN of Vicina, Auxiliary bishop in the Romanian Church in the Americas. His bishop spoke about fasting and repentance; he compared the Triodion and Paschal cycles to the 3 stages of spiritual life: Illumination, Purification and Deification.
After lunch, His Grace spoke about the liturgical cycle of the Triodion. Then, the participants were divided into 4 workshops to study the Sunday of the Veneration of the Holy Cross from the Scriptural, Liturgical, Iconographical & Patristic aspects. Finally, each workshop shared their drawn conclusions. The day ended with Great Vespers service for the Third Lenten Sunday.
Such Retreats are a must for the faithful. We are always called to grow in the faith, and experience fellowship and discuss faith with our brothers and sisters. May the Lord always give us such blessings.