Sixteen men came from all over the United States Nov. 1 to 3 to visit the Byzantine Catholic Seminary of SS. Cyril and Methodius in Pittsburgh for a discernment retreat accurately titled “Come and See.”
The idea behind the weekend was to help retreatants prayerfully discern God’s calling by living with the seminarians and getting a taste of the experience of seminary life. Retreatants came from the four Ruthenian eparchies — Pittsburgh, Passaic, Parma, and Phoenix — and the Melkite Eparchy of Newton.
I was one of the men to attend this great weekend of prayer and fraternity. Prayer formed the structure of the retreat with beautiful liturgical services, including Vespers, Compline, Festal Matins, Divine Liturgies, and 9th Hour, led by Fathers Will Rupp, Robert Pipta, and Joel Barstad. There were also short classes and talks led by various instructors who teach at the seminary, by spiritual directors of seminarians, and by the seminarians themselves.
Fraternity was also a significant part of the weekend. The seminarians were each assigned retreatants in order to mentor them. This provided for some very good spiritual conversations on discernment and life in general. Very enjoyable was an ice cream social where we and the seminarians were able to talk, play games, and have genuine human interaction, Continue reading