“Everyone of us needs half an hour of prayer each day, except when we are busy – then we need an hour.”
~ St. Francis de Sales.

19th Annotation Retreat in Daily Life. What is it and who makes one?

St. Ignatius of Loyola, who created the 30-day Spiritual Exercises during the 16th century, knew even then that some people would not be able to take 30 days away from their regular responsibilities to make a 30-day retreat.

The 19th Annotation (“the 19th”) then is an option of the 30-day retreat for individuals who cannot take the time away to do the Exercises as they were practiced originally. Often done by individuals who work full-time, the Exercises are extended over approximately nine months. Retreatants doing the 19th commit to weekly prayer practices, readings, meditations, and journaling under the guidance of their spiritual director. You will typically meet with your director on a weekly basis.

woman looking at cell phone on subway

When making the 19th, you are invited to spend 60 minutes in prayer each day. If you are interested in doing the 19th and you do not have an established prayer practice of at least 30 minutes each day, speak with your spiritual director. They can help you prepare yourself for the time commitment the 19th requires.

Each spiritual director personalizes the retreat to the person making the retreat. As you make the 19th, you will almost surely grow in your ability to look at God and self and how God is a part of your daily life in a deeper way. As you meet with your director, they will listen and sometimes ask a question that invites you to reflect more deeply on what you are hearing during prayer. These conversations are about the questions you bring and focus on whatever it is that you wish to discern together. Your director serves as a reflector or mirror to help you see more clearly what you are already seeing.

If you are interested, speak with your spiritual director (if they are certified to offer the 19th) or contact Sr. Carole Riley, CDP at wviscr@aol.com or 304.345.0926.