Below is a catalogue of retreats and workshops available from the Mission Bridge. Each can be customized to meet your unique needs. If a program you are searching for is not listed, contact Gordon Creamer at the Mission Bridge to discuss creating the program you desire. Any retreat can be transformed into a workshop format or modified to include a shorter or longer program.
Reclaiming Advent: A Story of Holy Desire
The Season of Advent often becomes lost on us as Christians in the flurry of the holidays and all that demands our attention each December.
Join us for a time of retreat and reflection, an opportunity to reclaim Advent as the gift for which it is intended. Through prayer, meditation and writing, participants will explore the
connection between desire as holy and the unique ways in which the Advent experience can nourish and deepen our celebration of Christmas. Dialogue and other spiritual exercises will creatively enhance the themes considered during the program. Please bring a journal for use throughout the program.
A Spiritual Journey Into the Desert
“The desert is the theater of the human struggle of searching for God.” ~ Jan Majernik
The spiritual life at varying times beckons us to the desert. To the place where all that originally held esteem or took credit is stripped away and laid bare. To the sanctuary within that demands simplicity, solitude and surrender.
Join us for an extended weekend (or modified version) in which we will explore the rich concepts of desert spirituality and its impactful message for us today as modern sojourners searching for God in all things.
Throughout the weekend, participants will be engaged in prayer, meditation and other creative opportunities to explore desert-related themes and practices. Sacred Scripture, alongside the writings of the Desert Mothers; Fathers, Henri Nouwen and Thomas Merton, will be integrated for consideration and application. In addition, the perspective of other faith traditions and spiritualities will be included to deepen understanding of the countless graces that are contained in the deserts of our lives.
A journal and comfortable walking shoes will be great companions to bring along. Desert survival kits will be provided upon arrival.
Dinner & Dialogue: Encountering Jesus in His Hidden Years
Join us during Lent as we spend time reflecting on the hidden or unknown years of Jesus’ life and prayerfully discerning their relevance to our unique journey with Him. Much of what we know about our Lord in the Scriptures involves His birth, public ministry and Passion. But, our hearts and minds often wonder what experiences He shared in that formed Him during His adolescent, teenage and young adult years.
Through meditation, dialogue and writing exercises, participants will connect with the graces available by imaginatively accompanying Jesus in these years not mentioned in the New Testament. A deepening of our faith and personal relationship with Jesus will be a focus for our
time spent together. A journal is a good companion for this program.
Harnessing the Divine Within: Creating Personal Rituals in a New Era
The ancient activity of creating and enacting rituals has served spiritual beings on the human journey for millennia. In particular, rituals have enabled humanity to access their inherent, divine spark to cultivate hope and meaning in the midst of life’s sweeping changes and ongoing seasons and cycles. To that end, individuals and communities throughout history have been inspired to mark rites of passage with a concrete exercise to commemorate their experiences. Examples of this span the gamut of welcoming the birth of a new family or church member and reverently keeping Sabbath to healing from trauma & losses and transitioning into retirement, facility living or from this life into death and beyond.
Join us for an opportunity to explore the value of rituals and incorporating them more noticeably into our spiritual journey as a cherished practice. Through meditation, journaling and other spiritual exercises, participants will be empowered and guided to create a ritual of their choice to honor a recent or upcoming transition or to manifest healing and balance as they emerge from pandemic or personal grief. Basic supplies will be provided and will include essential items for designing an individualized ritual that will be identified by each participant as the program unfolds. Please bring along a journal for use during the retreat.
Shadow Work as Spiritual Practice
Exploring the shadow realm of our spiritual lives is integral to our fruitful development as spiritual beings on the human journey and cultivates a way of living authentically as both individuals and members of various communities. Shadow work specifically involves getting in touch with the parts of ourselves that have been culturally, societally, or personably repressed during our lifetime and subsequently has become referred to with frequency as the "dark side" of human beings. Yet, the tasks and exercises that comprise shadow work empower each person to dive into the unconscious “material” that shapes our thoughts, emotions, and expressions of identity.
Join us for this session on spiritual practices with the aim of understanding more integrally the value our shadows can provide us. Nourishing opportunities for meditation, journaling, and interpersonal
connection will be included as we consider notable, applicable teachings, the mythologies underpinning shadow work, itself, and strive to leave more grounded in the graces this practice offers us by creating harmonious balance between our bodies, minds, and souls. The height of Autumn is the perfect time and landscape to delve into the very shadows that dwell within our vessels of light.
The practice of detachment being employed as a spiritual tool long precedes its popularity in the contemporary culture in which we find ourselves today. And, while ancient in its existence, the wisdom of its integration into our life journeys is timelessly appropriate. In common parlance, it is often perceived as a state of mind in which a person overcomes his/her attachment to desire for the other (things, people, or concepts). Yet, when practiced on a spiritual level, attainment of a heightened perspective can be experienced alongside a richer, and perhaps more meaningful, liberation of one’s soul.
Join us as we unpack exactly what living spiritually with detachment
can look like and how it’s incorporation as a nourishing practice can benefit you as a spiritual sojourner. In this hour long program we will briefly consider and discuss some of the renown and not so well-known teachings on detachment and experiment with its application to our momentary time spent together and moving forward thereafter.