So Minnesota: Demontreville Jesuit Retreat House

So Minnesota: Demontreville Jesuit Retreat

So Minnesota: Demontreville Jesuit Retreat

There’s a beautiful place in Lake Elmo that’s both spiritual and silent.

The Demontreville Jesuit Retreat House offers men time for spiritual renewal. The retreat is three days of silence and each man takes a vow to not speak.

“It’s a simplifying way and, in a sense, it allows the silence to become even more powerful,” Father Tom Lawler said. “There’s something that happens when you first drive through that front gate.”

This tradition started 75 years ago when the retreat opened in 1948. The daily schedule remains virtually untouched since the beginning, with time for mass, conferences and personal reflection.

“On Thursday afternoon when they arrive, many are coming directly from work. They’re exhausted and tired,” Lawler said. “By Sunday evening, they’re walking more slowly, they’re smiling, they’re more relaxed, they’re just more at ease. You can just tell something has happened.”

Each year, more than 3,000 men from all faiths and walks of life travel from across the country to attend the weekly retreats.

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