Spiritual Directors International

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Contemplative Retreat

Event has concluded.

Listening in Silence, Loving the World

Location: Nazareth Retreat Center, Nazareth, Kentucky
Dates: 12:15 p.m. Sunday, 19 April 2015–12:30 p.m. Wednesday, 22 April 2015
Contemplative Retreat Guide: Jonathan Montaldo

Full. To join the wailist, please e-mail Brittany Waldean at events@sdiworld.org.

Come participate in the contemplative retreat, mentored by the poetry of Thomas Merton and Mary Oliver, and find a space of freedom, solitude, and relaxation following the SDI conference and pilgrimage day. The contemplative retreat provides a time for simple prayer that Oliver describes as, "the doorway/into thanks, and a silence in which/another voice may speak" in her poem, "Praying."

The retreat commences with a Sunday afternoon visit to The Abbey of Gethsemani that includes visiting Merton's grave and his hermitage with a monk who was one of his novices. A maximum of thirty retreatants will then settle at Nazareth Retreat Center until Wednesday afternoon, concluding after the midday meal.

Thomas Merton scholar and retreat guide, Jonathan Montaldo, will lead two guided reflections each day to assist our inner work to become kindred human beings who choose to love the world.

Everyone who yearns for spaciousness in silence to deepen your contemplative practice is welcome. The majority of the contemplative retreat will be in noble silence. You are welcome to bring your favorite journal, sketchpad, camera, or acoustic instrument to assist you in integrating your experience.

The beautiful Kentucky landscape will provide the scene for growth and contemplation. Spend time exploring the lush hills in walking meditation, or in creative expression through sketching, journaling, photography, music, or movement. Make sure to view the slideshow of the Nazareth Retreat Center to begin eagerly anticipating our time together.

Enrollment is limited.


Cost includes transportation, tuition, a contemplative visit to the Abbey of Gethsemani, three nights of lodging, and nine meals.

Room options Cost
Private room (one twin bed) USD$575
Semi-private room (two twin beds) USD$475
Semi-private room (one shared double bed) USD$475
Note: All room types come with a shared bathroom.



Transportation will take retreatants from the Galt House Hotel on Sunday at 12:15 p.m. and return retreatants to either the Galt House or the Louisville International Airport on Wednesday afternoon, arriving at the airport by 3:00 p.m.

Contemplative Retreat Guide

Jonathan Montaldo is a former director of the Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University, and he served as the associate director of the Merton Institute for Contemplative Living. He has edited numerous volumes of Merton’s writing and created the ten-booklet series for small group dialogue Bridges to Contemplative Living with Thomas Merton.

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