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Catholic Medical Quarterly Volume 62 (1) February 2012, p43

Ampleforth Retreat 2011

By Dr James Flood Honorary Registrar

AmpleforthThe idea of going on a Retreat is not new and the CMA as you know has held one for many years. Usually in June, we met this time in September to avoid the AGM.

We arrived late in the midst of a thunderstorm and torrential rain but in time for the Schola Mass. One of the best things of being there was joining in the monastic series of services and being spoilt by hearing a choir of such high standard – well up to the Edington Festival in Wiltshire.

The new day started bright and clear at 0600 with Matins and Lauds before breakfast. Office of the day came before we got down to work with a series of talks and discussions led by Father Kieron. This year he took us through the ‘desert road’ that happens in all spiritual journeys, onto the Transfiguration before joining the monks again for the Conventual Mass.

After a rather demanding few hours we were grateful for a free afternoon to visit a friend in Pickering. Back however for a talk on the ‘Via Dolorosa’ with Vespers before supper and Compline at 2015. Quiet only comes in at 2230. Sundays start later with Matins at 0615, Lauds at 0800 and Conventual Mass at 1000 – this time with the whole school and celebrated by the Abbot (himself a CMA member and a Medical Registrar before becoming a Monk!).

The Retreat ended with a final session on the Resurrection before lunch and time to say our goodbyes. This year there were only six of us but we all enjoyed the chance to think and came away spiritually refreshed. Do think about joining next year’s Retreat – after all we attend post grad courses for our professional development so it seems natural to do the same for our spiritual life?!

The dates will be advertised in the CMQ so watch out for those and book early.