top of page


Week 4: Welcome



This week we turn our attention to the future, building off the graces of the previous weeks to explore what God is calling each of us to do in our lives. Our prayer will focus on the ways God gives us the desire to love God and neighbor and gives us the means to make that love real.


Lord Jesus, we ask you now to help us to remain with you always, to be close to you with all the ardor of our hearts, to take up joyfully the mission you entrust to us. May we continue in your presence and spread the good news that you bring. Amen.

Genesis 18:1-15 “The Lord appeared to Abraham…”

Psalm 116:12-19 “How can I repay the Lord..?”

Genesis 18:1-15 “The Lord appeared to Abraham…”

Psalm 116:12-19 “How can I repay the Lord..?”

Matthew 7:7-11 “Seek and you will find…”

Mark 10:46-52 “What do you want me to do for you?”

Luke 1:26-38 “May it be done to me according to your word…”

Luke 1:39-56 “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord…”

John 1:29-51 “What are you looking for?”

John 15:1-17 “I am the Vine…”

John 21:1-19 “Do you love me as much as these?”

1 Corinthians 12:31-13 “...but the greatest of these is love.”


Here you can find resources to help you pray through Week Four, including two guided Ignatian contemplations: the first is Mark 10 “The Healing of Bartimaeus” and the second is John 21, where the Risen Jesus talks with Peter on the shores of Galilee. We have also written a meditation on a curious style of Japanese pottery known as kintsugi, which takes broken pottery or porcelain and welds them back together with gold. You can also go back to the resources from the first three weeks on the Retreat Resources page.

Week 4: Admissions

Practical Guide

In the past weeks, we’ve asked you to spend part of your daily life in prayer with God. We’ve encouraged you to pray with your memory, reflecting on the times you’ve been loved and the times you’ve been hurt. We’ve invited you to jump into Scripture and read stories of God’s mercy, forgiveness, and healing. We’ve shared with you the spiritual genius of Saint Ignatius of Loyola and introduced you to the Examen, the Principle and Foundation, and his meditations and contemplations.

We’ve done all of this to bring you closer to God in prayer and so that you know in the depths of your being that you are loved by God. We hope this awareness of being both loved and a sinner has inspired in you a desire to respond to the grace and gifts that God has shared with you during this retreat.

This week the focus of the retreat is seeking to understand how we can make a loving response to the God who loved us first. The theme of the week is living as loved sinners: we know, despite our woundedness and sinfulness, that God loves us and calls us to new life. God wants to heal us in order to lead us to fullness of life and a generous sharing of God’s love. We have a part in making God’s desire happen.

The grace we are seeking this week, then, is to know more intimately what God desires for us. We want to know and accept what God is calling us to do in our daily lives to spread God’s love. Be free to hear what God has to say: God may be asking you to embrace a big change or God may be asking you to continue faithfully doing what you have been doing.

Whatever God might have to say to you, here are some ways for you to enter more deeply into prayer this week of retreat.

  1. Praying with Scripture: there are many passages in Scripture that tell stories of people responding to God’s call and to God’s love. Good places to start would be the Annunciation (Luke 1:26-1:38) and the Visitation (Luke 1:39-56): Mary’s yes to God is in many ways the model of all Christian discipleship. Or meditate on Matthew 7:7-11, an excerpt from the Sermon on the Mount in which Jesus tells his disciples to ask God for what they want. There are many good passages with which to do an Ignatian contemplation, including the healing of Blind Bartimaeus (Mark 10:46-52), the call of the first disciples of Jesus (John 1:29-51), and Peter’s reconciliation with Jesus on the shores of the Sea of Galilee (John 21:15-21). As you pray with Scripture, pay attention to the desires that arise in your heart. Talk with God about your desires and listen to what God has to say.

  2. Praying with your desire: our desires are a gift from God. While they can be warped and refracted through our woundedness and sinfulness, our desires speak to what is going on inside of our hearts. It is in the intimacy of our own hearts that God speaks to us. Spend some time asking what it is you want. Then, talk about your desires with God. Think of this as a conversation, as one friend talking to another. The closer you get to your true and holy desires, those desires that beat at the center of your heart, the closer you will get to God’s desires for you.

  3. Praying with prior weeks: use any Week One, Two, or Three retreat resource to feed your prayer.

A few reminders as you move into the week: Remember that this retreat does not depend on you figuring it out, or the advice we have given. Simply show up, offer yourself as generously as you can, and God will be there and do the work. Furthermore, in all of these suggestions, use what is helpful and draws you to God. Toss aside what is distracting or unhelpful. The rule is you and God’s personal encounter, not anything we say. And where you find the grace, remain with it. Quality over quantity!

Give yourself the gift of listening to God loving you, without qualifying things or needing to be all fixed up first. Invite God into the mess, wherever you are. You can let go and fall into God’s arms. That’s all God wants. Then comes generosity. Then comes service. Then comes deeper life.

Week 4: Text


We highlight these resources for the week. You can find these, and resources from last week on the Prayer Resources page.

Here you will find an Ignatian Contemplation based on the healing of Bartimaeus from Mark's Gospel.

Here you will find a guided Ignatian Contemplation on a story from the Gospel of John where the Risen Jesus appears to his disciples on the shores of the Sea of Galilee.

Here you will find a guided Ignatian Contemplation on a story from the Gospel of Mark where Jesus calls Peter to follow him.

Ignatian contemplation focuses on using our imagination to place ourselves in biblical scenes or other spiritual contexts, while paying attention to our affective feelings.

Here you will find a more detailed look at the Examen prayer, along with videos that can help deepen your understanding of this key Ignatian prayer.

Did you find the concept of "indifference" in the Principle and Foundation difficult to understand? If so, here is a closer look at what Ignatian Indifference is.

Week 4: List
bottom of page