Annual Respect Life Retreat to be held September 21 to 22 Print
Around the Diocese
Written by Cathy Lins, For the Catholic Herald   
Thursday, Sep. 13, 2018 -- 12:00 AM

BARABOO -- Vigil for Life will host the 11th annual Respect Life Retreat at Durward's Glen Retreat and Conference Center in Baraboo on September 21 to 22.

They are inviting anyone who works and/or prays to build a culture of life and who recognizes that this effort is ultimately the Lord's battle to save souls and protect innocent lives from conception until natural death.

Marie Lins, board member for Vigil for Life, indicated that this will be a great way to prepare for the 40 Days for Life effort starting in September.

Retreat schedule

The retreat will begin on Friday, Sept. 21, with an optional prayer vigil at 3 p.m. outside of the Planned Parenthood facility in Madison. Participants will pray for the protection of the unborn and their mothers/fathers. The innocent victims lost due to abortion will be brought to God in prayer and solidarity.

The group will then move to Durward's Glen Retreat Center located at W11876 McLeisch Rd., Baraboo. Registration and check-in are from 5 to 6 p.m. The first event is a simple meal. Later, there will be meditations, followed by all-night Adoration.

Throughout the weekend, participants will have opportunities for Confession, Adoration, Liturgy of the Hours, the Holy Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the "Source and Summit" of our faith.

Saturday starts with the Rosary, Benediction, and 8 a.m. Mass. The day will include meditations and a presentation after lunch. The event will end with an optional prayer vigil at the Planned Parenthood facility in Portage at approximately 5 p.m.

Retreat master

The Retreat Master, Fr. Richard Heilman, pastor of St. Mary Parish in Pine Bluff, has been asked to offer meditations which focus on Jesus Christ, keeping in mind that participants serve in various roles in the pro-life movement.

Father Heilman said he wants those considering this retreat to know that "we are facing a watershed moment in the 45-year effort to return to a pro-life nation. Now is the time for us to redouble our efforts, especially in the area of trust in the supernatural power of God."

He indicated that they can expect the focus of his talks to be on "Kneel for Life." He said, "I want to concentrate on the 'spiritual battle' involved in this mission to return us to a pro-life nation. I want participants to leave with a concrete plan for increasing our practice of, and trust in the supernatural power of God."

Observing Ember Days

Because the dates of the retreat fall over Ember Days, the menu has been adjusted to allow participants to observe the fast requested by Bishop Robert C. Morlino.

In his letter to the faithful regarding the abuse scandal, Bishop Morlino stated, "I ask that all priests, clergy, religious, and diocesan employees join me in observing the upcoming Autumn Ember Days (September 19, 21, and 22) as days of fasting and abstinence in reparation for the sins and outrages committed by members of the clergy and episcopacy and I invite all the faithful to do the same."

Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The Marian Center has agreed to have the relic image of Our Lady of Guadalupe at the retreat. The relic image in the Mother of America Chapel at the Marian Center for Peace of Wisconsin Rapids is one of 220 relics intended for distribution throughout the world, four of which are currently in the United States.

The replicas were touched to the sacred original tilma of St. Juan Diego, safeguarded at the International Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City.

A pilgrim venerating the relic image can receive the same graces that would be available had he/she traveled thousands of miles on pilgrimage to Mexico City. These images have been taken to pro-life events, Marian conferences, and Eucharistic processions.

How to register

Spaces for the Respect Life Retreat are limited. Contact Marie Lins at 608-469-3982 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for reservations or questions. Brochures are available at on the right side of the page.

The cost per person is $85 (including lodging). Commuters can register for $30 each. Checks may be made payable to "Vigil for Life" and mailed to Vigil for Life, P.O. Box 499, Baraboo, WI 53913.

Financial assistance may be available for those in need.

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