Sister Cheryl Clemons PhotoAfter designing her sabbatical during her Golden Jubilee year, Sr. Cheryl Clemons, OSU, Ph.D. began her journey to deepen her relationship with God and rest body, mind, and spirit. Her first step on the journey led her to WVIS and an experience that she described as one that “began with an 8-day Ignatian retreat and ended with her completing the 30-day Ignatian Spiritual Exercises at the WVIS Hermitage.” Sr. Cheryl shared that “in between those two events at WVIS, she was so grateful to have been able to do a two-week pilgrimage to Rome and Brescia, Italy.”
While at WVIS Sr. Cheryl shared that she relearned under the gentle guidance of the staff how to listen to her emotions, body, history, needs and longings. She expressed that as part of this deeper listening, she was able to listen in new ways to God, and told me, “I began to find God everywhere — in silence, imaginative prayer, beautiful “weeds” growing among rocks, flowers, trees, as well as new friends and old. Each of these mirrored God’s diverse beauty.”

Her journey continued as she described her time in Italy as a time of solitude in which she was able to listen to theology through her heart in the art, fountains, and sacred spaces of Rome and Brescia.

“What a gift,” she told me, “that the listening which began with WVIS and took me on a pilgrimage to Italy, led to a new way of life for me – a life of greater balance, peace, and a deeper listening to God, self, and others.”