By Special to the Intermountain Catholic —
St. Vincent de Paul Catholic School staff shook up their usual plans for Back-to-School prep and headed to Huntsville for a spiritual retreat to rest, reconnect and reflect before the new school year began.
At the site where the Trappist monastery once stood, the staff received a tour of the grounds given by Michael O’Brien, author of the book Monastery Mornings, who spent much time with the monks as a young boy.
A statue of Our Lady of Confidence overlooks the cemetery of monks who devoted their lives in service of prayer. Their prayerful spirit is still palpable in the green rolling hills and gentle serene breeze. The staff enjoyed quiet moments to pray, find fellowship and reflect on St. Vincent’s theme for the new school year, “The Eucharist – We Are One Body.”
They attended Mass at St. Florence Mission in Huntsville. The celebrant was Fr. Samuel Dinsdale, the new pastor at St. Vincent de Paul Parish. Fr. Dinsdale gave a reflection on the components of the Eucharistic Prayer, and together they adored the Blessed Sacrament and joined in singing their anthem for the year, “We Are One Body, One Body in Christ.”
The echoes of this anthem shaped the day as the teambuilding activities promoted creativity and laughter. Staff cohorts highlighted their accomplishments and celebrated one another’s contributions. Each activity reinforced their dedication to the creed that they are all unique parts of Christ’s body, serving one church.
The staff also received journals with a different personal saint to walk with for the year and another member of the staff to remember in their prayers. These thoughtful details created prayerful intentions for the staff to enter the new year with renewed hearts and minds.
“This retreat was a perfect way to set the tone for the new school year,” said Gary Green, principal of St. Vincent de Paul School. “We linked with the Church’s Eucharistic Revival, we set individual goals, and we built community among the staff. It was a busy day.”
Please pray for the St. Vincent De Paul Parish School staff and all Catholic schools in Utah as they prepare to bring Christ’s light to the young minds and hearts in their care. We Are One Body, One Body in Christ.