Every Jesuit makes an annual 8-day silent retreat, and Jesuit Brendan Busse, a scholastic, welcomes this time away.
“I need this time. I long for it. Of course I do what I can to nurture silence in my heart on a daily basis, but these annual retreats are privileged moments, graced times. They are, in a word, a gift,” Busse wrote in a blog entry for The Jesuit Post, before leaving for his yearly retreat.
“It’s not that I can’t find the joy of love and the presence of God immersed in our world,” Busse wrote. “It’s simply that I need time to be with God. Or really: it’s simply that I need God. I immerse myself in silence so that I can clear the air, the desk, the mind, the heart, and make room again for God.”
Busse compares daily life to a game of basketball, with moments of rest and re-collection occurring when there are pauses in the game. For Busse, the silent retreats are like those moments:
I’ve stepped away from the game to retrieve something lost, to catch my breath, to find the one thing necessary for the game to continue. The Compassionate Stranger bends over and takes the ball in hand and then performs a simple, perhaps thoughtless, act of generosity, an act of random kindness. Given the opportunity to be of ‘a little help’ they toss the ball back to me, and I jog back to join the players on the court so the game can continue.
Read Busse’s full entry at The Jesuit Post.