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    Scheduled Retreats

Contemplation In Action (CIA) ‘Working’ Men's Retreat

What:      6th Annual - Contemplation In Action (CIA) ‘Working’ Men's Retreat
When:      Saturday, September 30 - Tuesday, October 3nd, 2017
Where:     Nazareth Retreat Center, Boise, Idaho
Theme:    Building The Kingdom
Presenters:   Fr. Rob Irwin, Pastor, Our lady of the Valley, Caldwell & John Hitchman, Spanish Instructor & Mentor, St. Mary's, Boise. 

Who:  Men interested in exploring Building The Kingdom as it applies to their personal, family and community lives; willing to help paint, repair and tend the grounds of Nazareth Retreat Center.

Suggested Reference/Book:
Building The Kingdom - A History of the Catholic Church
Robbie Peñate, More info at:

This Sacred Moment - Becoming Holy Right Where You Are
Albert Haase, OFM
More info at:

Cost:  (No Charge) Meals and lodging provided free for workers; Collection will be taken for Speaker’s from participants to pay their expenses and honorarium

Summary:  Contemplation In Action, Working Men's, Retreat in September,30-October 3rd, 2017  at Nazareth Retreat Center, Boise. [No Charge] One or more days of your labor in trade for room and board. Mass/Communion Service, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday; short daily reflections at Morning & Evening prayer; Any questions call Nazareth at 208/375-2932, check out the web site or email More info about Nazareth can be found at:

Goal:  Help Nazareth Retreat Center complete chores necessary to maintain the facility and provide men ages 18 and older with perspectives on Building the Kingdom in their everyday lives!


  1. Host men ages 18 and older from the neighborhood, region and the state of Idaho to trade their labor for rest and spiritual renewal for 1 to 3 days.
  2. Experience Nazareth, a quiet haven away from the “noise” of daily life and regular responsibilities as each person shares his gifts.
  3. Experience philosophies, humor, knowledge and ideas through sharing of action/work that leads to mental, emotional and spiritual growth.   
  4. Come to know models, prayers, and ideas about Mercy & Service from Roman Catholic religious traditions and perspectives.
  5. Experience & Discuss Mercy & Service while making repairs, painting, eating or wandering on the grounds.
  6. Gain skills in simple prayer, dialogue, and manual labor.
  7. Achieve one or more of the goals of the USCCB Building Intercultural Competence in Ministry (BICIM) guidelines to increase our capacity to welcome, receive, and encourage all emerging cultural groups in the Diocese of Boise.
  8. Network, gain perspective and support in Christian Community!
  9. Have fun in Christian fellowship with other men!

Expected Outcomes:

    • The patio in front of the Mary Grotto will be repaired and pavers removed, reset / replaced trees and bushes trimmed and manicured, grass and weeds removed from flower bed.
    •  Weed and shape up other flowerbeds especially around the main building.
    •  One or two Nazareth units, air conditioning enclosures, will be painted outside...
    • Identified repair, replacement, & landscaping tasks will be completed…
    • Men will emerge rested and with one or more Building the Kingdom   models/ideas to use in their lives and families.
    • A handout will be prepared focused on the Theme of Building the Kingdom that each participant can take home and/or may be posted to the Nazareth website for others to ponder.
    • Those interested will read suggested Building the Kingdom book (s) pre/post retreat.
    • "All are Welcome" In addition to traditional invitations & media efforts; 2017 organizers will specially invite Hispanic and other groups of non-European origin to participate in the 2017 retreat. 

    Theme: Building The Kingdom  

    Building God’s kingdom is not for the faint of heart; it takes courage, strength and persistence. But let us never think that, if the task is too difficult, we can relax and let others take the lead. No, Jesus, the foundation of our faith and the one to whom we will return, demands more from us.  As Jesus (Luke 12:48b) says, “From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded.” Thus, we need to roll up our sleeves and get to work in a common unified effort. 
    OraEtLabora.jpgLet us take up the challenge of building the kingdom upon Christ the rock foundation. Let us not wait until disaster strikes the Christian community; rather let us act now so the Scriptures may be fulfilled and Jesus’ plan may come to full fruition: “That they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you sent me” (Jn 17:21). (1)
    Each human person is not the absolute owner of his or her gifts or possessions but rather the trustee or steward of them. These gifts are given in trust for the building of the Kingdom of God, to be shared.  Men are called to appreciate the physical, spiritual, and theological significance of the stewardship of the Nazareth Retreat Center and its resources in this retreat. So come Build the Kingdom, pray and work! (2)


    Fr. Robert Irwin Pastor/Párroco,,
    Our "Lady" of the Valley Catholic Community, Caldwell, Idaho 

    Contact info:
    1122 W. Linden St., Caldwell, Idaho    
    Phone: 208-459-3653 ext: Ext. 3006
    Fax: 208-454-8789


    Bio: Fr. Robert Irwin was was ordained in 1995 after earning a degree in communications and psychology from Oregon State University in 1988. This is the seventh parish he has led.  He most recently served as Pastor of St. Jerome Catholic Church in Jerome, Idaho, prior to being assigned as Pastor of Our Lady of the Valley.  He leads communities, retreats and prayer in Spanish and English. W. Hitchman, St Mary's Community
    Catholic University of Chile, Jesuit Refugee Service, Roman Catholic Diocese of Boise (Retired) Boise, Idaho

    Contact info:
    6200 River Ponte Dept. K202, Boise, Idaho 83714
    Phone: 208-954-3202

    Bio: Born in Chile. Studies of Philosophy, Pedagogy, Theology, Language (French, Latin, German, Italian). Professor in High Schools, University of Chile, and Instructor in the Permanent Deacon Program of the Diocese of Boise.  Current Spanish Instructor & Mentor for the Diocese of Boise and Leaders School in Spanish at St. Mary's Parish, Boise, Idaho.

    Mealtime Prayer
    Lord Jesus,
    we are your brothers and sisters,
    and we gather here in your name.
    In your love, give us your blessing,
    and bless this food for us.
    Help us to grow in your love,
    and work with you to build up the kingdom of God.
    - Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, A Book of Blessings, 182.

    Discussion:  Building The Kingdom  In Everyday Life

    1. There are six (6), 30 minute presentations and three (3) Eucharistic services scheduled in; Homilies are divided up between Priest/Deacon and John based on the focus of their presentations!   The idea is for each to bring their own unique perspective to the Building the Kingdom topic! Morning and evening prayer can be from the divine office or other framework. 
    2. The CIA Work retreat is a group living experience in which the exchange of ideas and techniques in the field of Building the Kingdom   and fellowship emerge in the presence of the Holy Spirit.  There is no distinction of leaders from workers; we are all on retreat together.  We work in humility, kindness, grace and peace toward the same physical, mental and spiritual goals.  The pace should enrich life and not merely add skills and information to already busy folk.  Self paced contributions are expected…Those who gather assume cooperation in complete sharing as the retreat unfolds.

    3. Participants will register for one to three days and will come and leave as they are called by other responsibilities.   We will ask each for 6 to 8 hours of labor and prayer.  They need to make clear at registration how many days and what meals they will participate in.   We need to discuss with Nazareth any upper or lower limits for this retreat.
    4. Presenters will share “best” Building the Kingdom   methods/models from ethical, faith based, or historical basis in the same direction...vocation, avocation, business and family.   The desired outcomes are that 'all' participants would go home with several "Best Practices" for Building The Kingdom   from holy men, for holy men, that they can use the rest of their lives...Eucharistic Homilies around Building The Kingdom  with hands on or reflective components that guys can discuss while painting, eating, or wandering on the grounds.  
    5. In 2016 we had 15 different men participate; and two women helped Thursday & Sunday.
    6. Program planning, conversation, prayer and objectives based on "your" personal "Building the Kingdom" insights, perceived needs of the men who will attend and the Holy Spirit will commence!  The truth is we trust God has a great plan and our role is to facilitate this opportunity! 
    7. "All Are Welcome" This year we are inviting underserved communities of men and will need to provide communications in Spanish and English in all aspects of the retreat. Last year we had foreign nationals attend and the refugee community might be invited as well.
    8. Meals and lodging provided free for workers; Mass Daily/Saturday and simple daily morning & evening prayer using the Cursillo/Church Models will be offered. More info about Nazareth can be found at:
    9. This retreat uses the Experiential Learning Model for personal and professional development:

    Accessed 04/30/2013 at:

     Experience: Note the model begins with an experience. Action! This immediately focuses the attention on the learner rather than the teacher. When the learner is encouraged to learn by doing before being told or shown how, opportunities are presented for a wide variety of life skills to be practiced depending on the method used to engage the youth in the experience. As the group leader your challenge is to “sit on your hands” as much as possible during the experience step. You and the retreat participant involved will quickly learn what the skill or knowledge level is. Many times you will hear “We figured this out all by ourselves!”

    Share: As the model shows sharing is simply asking the group or individuals: What did you do? What happened? What did it feel like to do (whatever)? This step should generate information leading to the process step.

    Process: The questions and discussion now become more focused on what was most important about the experience. Common themes that merge from the sharing session are explored further. Often the key teaching points related to the subject matter are discussed.

    Generalize: In this step the discussion becomes more personal. So what? Is the question. What did the experience mean to me personally? To my everyday life? The subject matter alone could remain the focus of the discussion in all five steps of the model. However, because the major outcome is to help youth develop important life skills, a major part of the discussion is shifted on the life skill the retreat participant practiced while doing the activity or experience. If the method employed required the retreat participant to work in teams to complete the activity then questions about teamwork would be appropriate. If the methodology asks the retreat participants to communicate then communications skills are discussed.

    Apply: What was really learned and can the retreat participant express how they can use what they learned? Or better yet, can they actually show that they have mastered a skill by performing another activity that requires the new skill to be used? Again the emphasis is placed on the life skill practiced rather than the subject matter skill.

    Accessed 04/30/2013 at:


    Saturday, September 30, 2017

    6:00-8:00 p.m. Arrival
    8:00  Building The Kingdom
    Presentation #1 John Hitchman  
    8:30  Evening Prayer

    Sunday  October 01, 2017
    7:30  Morning Prayer
    8:00-8:30   Breakfast
    Orientation to Nazareth and Scope of 2017 CIA Work, Fritz & Marge
    8:30  Building The Kingdom Presentation #2 John Hitchman  
    9:00  Contemplation in Action
    10:30  Mass/Eucharist
    12-12:30 Noon -  Lunch
    1:00  Contemplation in Action
    6:00  Dinner
    6:00-8:00 Sabbath Time/Library  
    8:00  Building The Kingdom Presentation #3 Fr. Rob Irwin
    8:30  Evening Prayer

    Monday October 02, 2017  
    7:30  Morning Prayer
    8:00-8:30   Breakfast
    Orientation to Nazareth and Scope of 2017  CIA Work, Fritz & Marge
    8:30  Building The Kingdom Presentation #4  Fr. Rob Irwin
    9:00  Contemplation in Action
    11:45-12:15 Noon   - Lunch
    1:00 p.m.  Eucharist, Fr Rob Irwin
    2:00  Contemplation in Action
    6:00-6:30   Dinner
    6:30  Sabbath Time/CIA Continues
    8:00  Building The Kingdom Presentation #5 John Hitchman
    8:30  Evening Prayer

    Tuesday, October 03,2017 [If Needed]

    7:30  Morning Prayer
    8:00-8:30   Breakfast
    8:30  Building The Kingdom Presentation #6 John Hitchman 
    9:00   Contemplation in Action
    11:30 Mass - Eucharistic Service  
    12-12:30 Lunch &Thank You, Marge & Fritz
    1:00  Contemplation in Action
    TBD - End of Retreat Closing Prayer

    Download PDF of Retreat Information

    Download PDF of Registration Form

    Download Word version of Registration Form


    Fall Sports - Football
    Boise State University: Bye Week- No Game
    College of Idaho:  Bye Week - No Game

    University of Idaho: Bye Week - No Game
    Idaho State University:  (Home) Cal Poly September 30th

    Hunting & Fishing
    2017  Idaho Big Game Idaho Hunting Season:
    2017  Idaho Fishing Season:

    2017  Upland, Game, Furbearer, Turkey Season:

    Building The Kingdom; Experiential Learning Model References

    A Call to Serve (McCloskey):
    Building A Kingdom of Love (Podcast):
    Building Intercultural Competency in Ministry:
    Building The Kingdom :
    Building The Kingdom :
    Building The Kingdom :
    Building The Kingdom :
    Building The Kingdom:
    City of God (St. Augustine Summary):
    Contemplation In Action:
    Contemplation In Action:
    Contemplation In Action:
    Experiential Learning & Learning Styles:
    Experiential Learning Model:
    Experiential learning: experience as the source of learning and development:
    Gods Call to Serve Others:
    How does the Kingdom of God Grow:
    Kingdom of God (Bishop Robert Barron, Video):
    Models of the Church:
    Rob Irwin:
    Service Learning A Retreat Experience:
    Service of Others (CCC):
    Service to Others:
    Serving Others:
    The Kingdom of God ( Pope Francis):
    The Kingdom of God (CCC):
    The Kingdom of Justice & Peace(USCCB):

    Labyrinth Web Resources

    Corn Maze and Labyrinth Construction:$Department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex4770/$FILE/888-12.pdf
    Enter the labyrinth:
    History of Labyrinth:
    Labyrinth Walking Guide:
    Laying Out a Labyrinth:
    Maze and Labyrinth Gardens in History:
    The labyrinth society:
    What is  a Labyrinth:


    General Retreats

    For information or registration contact us

    Personal Day Retreat – No meals or private room provided. This is a perfect opportunity to treat yourself to a few hours (or a day) and spend time in our chapel, our reading lounge, and/or our lovely grounds. Coffee and tea provided.  No charge. However, you must call or e-mail to schedule. 

    Private Overnight Retreat with a private room would require a letter of request and a letter of support from your pastor or professional caregiver.  Call or e-mail for more information.

    Group Retreats, Workshops and Seminars - Call or e-mail for more information.

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