The beginning of a new year is a special opportunity for refreshing hearts, minds, and spirits. For the first time, the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist in Lowell, Michigan, are inviting groups of up to 30 people to consider spending some reflective, prayerful time at their Life Process Center. The retreat program is called LIFE, which means Living in the Franciscan Experience.

Located on 230 acres of woods and farm land, the setting is idyllic, the ambience is spiritual, and the price is minimal. A private retreat is $50 a day per person. For a retreat directed by a Franciscan Guide, the cost is $75 a day per person. Daily contact with a Franciscan Guide assists guests in their communication with God. The Sisters use Scripture as the primary resource for reflection and meditation.

Those who come on private retreats of a day or as long as a week are invited at specified times to pray the Liturgy of the Hours with the Franciscans. Overnight guests present on Tuesday and/or Thursday evenings can choose to share dinner with the Sisters.

The Center offers sleeping accommodations to meet many different needs, including handicapped accessibility. These options include eight bedrooms in the Center with twin or double beds, some with an attached bathroom. The other bedrooms have a full bathroom on the same floor. The Center’s kitchen is available to them for preparing their meals.

Another option is the San Pietro Guest House that can house nine people and includes a central meeting place. San Pietro has two, fully-equipped kitchens, one on each floor for guests to use. But the Franciscans think the most popular sleeping quarters will be the two new yurts—one handicapped accessible. With heating, hardwood floors, and views overlooking a woods rich with wildlife, the yurts offer the promise of quiet.

These circular, tent-like structures are similar in design to the portable housing used by nomads in Asia. More rustic than the other two sleeping options, these brand new yurts covered in green canvas have toilets inside. Yurt guests have full access to the Center’s kitchen and shower/bath facilities. All three overnight accommodations include bedding and towels.

For retreat guests who do not want to bring food and do their own cooking, the Franciscans can provide the names of caterers who will deliver meals to the Center.

To make reservations or for more information on “Living in the Franciscan Experience,” please contact the Director of the Retreat Program at: franciscanguide@lifeprocesscenter.org or call (616) 897-7842, ex. 302. And remember: One LIFE experience leads to another!