2021-09-15 06:00:00
2021-10-17 16:00:00

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Finding Identity and Strength, Even in Difficult Times

Finding Identity and Strength, Even in Difficult Times

On the weekend before Thanksgiving, with masks on and social distance boundaries observed, 13 young women from the Walsh Campus were given the opportunity for a change of pace and a change of scenery. It may have looked different this year—no couches, no more than four in the game room, only two per table at mealtimes—but the Fall Spiritual Retreat offered our youth the same needed reprieve it has consistently become.

The theme of this year’s retreat was “Your Place, My Place, Our Place.” When thinking about why a retreat could be important now, the retreat committee wanted to empower in our young people the resilience we all must muster as we navigate this pandemic. The committee decided that the necessary resilience is rooted in a strong sense of identity.

When the youth arrived at La Salle Manor, each had a banner on their door that contained only their name. Each session over the weekend focused on a different way to think of their identities. At the end of each session, they created a symbol to capture the piece of their identity they had just explored and added it to their banners. At the end of the retreat, they had a “coat of arms” that captured many of the different strengths they can tap into in tough times.

Over the weekend, the youth took the StrengthsFinder assessment, contemplated their enneagram types, explored what their superhero origin would be, and created a self-portrait. They all meditated to center themselves, and, on Saturday evening, they participated in a session that had them focus on how to build and use positive energy.

Our spiritual retreats are a great opportunity for our kids to learn and grow together, as well as build community with each other and our coworkers. The opportunity to go on retreats is an important part of our kids’ time at Mercy Home. In addition to allowing them some time to get away from their everyday life, it also gives them space to have fun and build relationships in a stress-free environment. This is especially important in the time of COVID-19!

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