Closure of Marie Reparatrice Retreat Centre at Wimbledon

The Region of Gt. Briton / Ireland held their last inter-community meeting in Wimbledon from the 13th to the 15th of November 2007. There were very mixed emotions as each one had their own particular memory of the Retreat Centre.

On the evening of the 13th our Regional, Eileen led us in a very meaningful prayer of the parables of the mustard seed and the yeast which helped us to reflect again on the Orientation of the Chapter, ‘A woman rooted in the love of Christ…
A woman who manifests the tender love of God…
A woman led by the Spirit of God….

On Wednesday morning we shared on the above and it became a very moving experience on sacred ground.

Maureen and community pulled out all the stops to provide a most festive dinner which was thoroughly enjoyed by all. Later on we re-assembled to discuss and share on Christine Anderson’s Article on Leadership and Membership in International Congregations today. Barbara led us into this time of sharing with a prayerful hymn. ‘O God you search me….’

The last session was a prayer time together led by Josephine and Barbara on the story of Jesus serving breakfast. During this time each sister presented a symbol and shared on its significance for her in relation to Wimbledon retreat centre. Some relics from the Archives were also on view which added to the solemnity of the closing ritual.

The following is a brief history of Wimbledon taken from a composition by Maureen of the closure of Marie Reparatrice Retreat Centre. The sisters of Marie Reparatrice arrived at the Ridgeway on the 26th June 1951 having come from Chiswick. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament commenced and has continued until the present day. On the 25th May 1952 our Retreat work started, only catering for females, then progressed to include males and finally mixed groups, all being Roman Catholic. Today we welcome Anglican, Methodist, Quaker, Buddhist and other groups. Indeed many works have been carried out throughout the years including Prayer Vigils, thirty, eight, six day and guided retreats, Catechetical instruction for children and the making of Church Vestments etc.

For the past we say ‘Thanks’ and to the future ‘Yes’.
The sisters will continue to live in the same area as they soon move into their new residence at Stanton Road.

Go n’eirigh an bother libh. Best wishes to you all.

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