An encounter day is your invitation to step back and take time to deepen your personal encounter with God. Also called retreat days, the emphasis is upon deepening your friendship with God.

Each encounter day enjoys  a clear focus, which guides your personal journey through the day. Encounter days are built around three core components,

  • Relaxed engagement in practical, guided, reflective prayer,
  • Interacting with material purposefully designed to open up pathways leading deeper towards God’s heart, and
  • Time for personal attentiveness to the presence of God
‘A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken’   Ecclesiastes 4:12

Encounter days are for everyone, not reserved for leaders or ‘spiritual’ people. They are for anyone who seeks to discover the reality of God and discover more of who they are created to be and to become. None of us ever stops emerging into all the fullness God has for us. Each of us needs to pay attention to the still small voice that calls us onward and directs our steps. We do not require special practices but do need to learn to grow increasingly attentive to the presence of God. As St. Nicolas Cabasilas, a layman who pursued God in the 14th Century, declared,

‘Everyone should keep his art or profession. The general should continue to command; the farmer to till the land; the artisan to practice his craft. And I will tell you why. It is not necessary to retire into the desert, to take unpalatable food, to alter one’s dress, to compromise one’s health, or to do anything unwise, because it is quite possible to remain in one’s own home without giving up all one’s possessions, and yet to practice continued meditation’

An encounter day affords you space to step away from your daily routine, to reflect on what lies behind you, to consider where you are today and to gaze into God’s future for you.

Some Participants’ Comments

‘The first time I have been on something like this, I would definitely go again.’

‘I loved the whole day, Micha was inspirational and very honest.

A great venue & scrummy food.’

‘It offered me a chance to draw aside, reflect and listen to God. I found the retreat affirming and a contemplative lift. Both the venue and the food was great.’

‘I learned some new ways to be still with God even though I’ve been to many retreats before. A fantastic day.’

Encounter days are restricted to no more than twelve participants. This creates a sense of a learning community without becoming a seminar group. They are NOT teaching days, nor training days. They are days where you encounter God.

Micha & Jayne also want to ensure that there’s time for personal interaction with them in the spaces of personal encounter. Both Micha & Jayne engage in Spiritual Accompaniment and Mentoring.

In recognition that we are integrated, whole people, at one with God and God’s creation, all food is home prepared and drawn from healthy sources. Lunch is taken together as a general rule and the table conversation is itself always a source of joy and encouragement. Our consistent refrain, ‘This is the day that the Lord has made, we shall rejoice and be glad in it’.

The recommended cost of the day inclusive of all materials, refreshments and lunch is £45 per person. Any difficulties with this please contact Micha. The proceeds all go to ensure that the vision of the Oratory as a House of Prayer continues.

Thanks so much for our day of reflection. A great way to start the year for me. It made me realise that our spiritual life needs the help of a structure or framework to enrich our relationship with God. It poses a challenge!’ ‘Thank you for such a wonderful day.’

Participant’s Comment from an encounter with Advent