Homily for the day after the end of the Long Retreat

“Coming out of the Long Retreat”

Coming out of the long retreat has something to do with going to an encounter. We have been alone during a long time, we have been dwelling in our thoughts for thirty days. We may have experienced very personal joys or very personal sorrows which nobody but Jesus would be able to listen. Coming out of a retreat is making new relations, is connecting with people you’ve not seen for a long time and which have changed possibly as much as you have changed yourself. Coming out of a retreat may look like this mornings when you feel it’s better to switch off your alarm clock and to sleep a extra hour, better than wake up and meet your fellow companions.

Whenever such sluggish thoughts come to your mind, look at how the beloved one’s have no harm to come out of their houses and to encounter each other. How they peer the voice of each other. How they look in and out at the window. How one stands behind the wall until the other comes fourth. See then how the Beloved address you painting a lovely world and saying :

“Winter is past, rains are over and gone
Flowers appears on the earth, the season of glad songs has come,
The cooing off the turtle dove is heard in our land”

(Song, 2;12).


Which one of us hearing such a voice, the same voice he heard within him in the midst of the Exercises, would not jump out of his bed at the encounter of his friends?

Which one of us at such a personal call to “come” and to “show (his) face” (Son, 2; 13-14) would not leap on the mountains and bound over the hills as Mary did when she came to Elizabeth (Lk;1,39).

Which one of us with such a personal hint of the presence of the Beloved would not acknowledge this with gratitude leaping on himself in the very deepness of his womb?


This is  what we are about to live now and in the coming days

“asking for interior knowledge of all the good I have received so that acknowledging this with gratitude, I may be able to love and serve His Divine Majesty in everything”

(Ad Amorem, Spirituals Exercises, n°233).

Be our Eucharist a living encounter with the Beloved, be our coming out of the retreat a living Eucharist in the world.

Based upon Song 2:8-14 / Lk 1:39-45