Sisters invite you to retreat

The Sisters of St Joseph invite you to their Batehaven convent for a quiet reflective time on Saturday September 9, 9.30am to 4.30pm.

In company with Sister Carmel Drew, you will become present to the wisdom of a cottage garden.

“The day’s first session is about appreciating the garden of creation,” Sr Carmel said.

“By taking time to enjoy the convent’s cottage garden at the start of spring, by letting its sounds, scents and colours sink into our senses, we listen deeply and become quietly attentive. We sense that the garden is alive, conscious and aware, in its own dreaming.

“Cosmic energy throbs through the earth until it bursts forth in the colours of spring. By finding ourselves within the garden, we sense the harmony of belonging, our part of a cosmic wholeness. When we lay aside our control, anxieties, and expectations, we can appreciate the garden’s beauty as pure gift, just as life itself, everything and everyone, are pure gift.

“The second session is about the garden of pain leading to new life. The cottage garden can help us put some of the tougher aspects of life into a new perspective. Like the roses, our lives are regularly pruned. By reflecting on the branches cut, we come to see our core selves more clearly. Yesterday’s losses transform into opportunities to channel energy more vitally, just as pruning helps roses bloom more vibrantly.

“The third session of the day is about meeting the gardener. Mary Magdelene thought Jesus was the gardener when she first saw Him on Easter Sunday morning. We can welcome His care in the role of gardener. We ask what new growth does He desire for us, at the current season of our own life garden? In our life garden, we feel the rhythm of our own spiritual life and growth.”

Cost is $30, including morning tea and lunch. Full weekend program, with a single ensuite room and all meals from Friday evening to Sunday lunch - $150. Ph 44724021 or email

Sr Carmel Drew.

Sr Carmel Drew.


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