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Summer School 2021
5th July – 9th July, 15:30-19:00 UK Time

“In the inner stillness where meditation leads, the Spirit secretly anoints the soul and heals our deepest wounds.”
St. John of the Cross

Introduction


St John of the Cross is one of the greatest Christian mystics and a Doctor of the Church. His writings have proved invaluable for spiritual guidance but understanding them can present a challenge. This summer school aims to help participants read the writings of St John of the Cross as he himself intended. This will mean examining the criteria which he gives us for correctly interpreting his work. Topics will include the relationship between his writings and his life-story; the place of his poetry in his overall message; the help which the prologues to his major works offer; and criteria for reading which we can dig out of each of those major works. The hope is that our summer school will enable us to read John with perhaps greater ease and relish, and certainly to let him speak to us with his authentic voice.

This summer school aims to help participants read the writings of St John of the Cross as he himself intended.  It also provides an exciting opportunity for a prayerful pondering of God’s word through the ancient practice of Lectio Divina.   Lectio Divina is a wonderful antidote to the incessant noise and demands of modern life. Normally it is a struggle for us to practice stillness and quiet. But in these times of self-isolation and physical distancing, what a wonderful opportunity to use the extra time we have to go deeper in intimacy with God and with St John of the Cross himself as our guide.

This will offer people the opportunity to learn more about Carmelite spirituality through the writings of one of Carmel’s best saints and from one of her best teachers of our time. It’s an exciting new opportunity for biblical and spiritual formation to suit all Christians – clergy, laity and the inquisitive!

Our Course Instructor, Fr. Iain Matthew, Carmelite Priest


Fr. Iain Matthew, OCD, is a Carmelite priest and Professor of Theology
and Spirituality at the Pontifical Spirituality Institute, Teresianum, Rome.
Bestselling author of the spiritual classic The Impact of God (Holder & Stoughton, 1995).

Background & Goals of the Programme

The Scripture & Spirituality Summer School runs every year. A book of the bible is taught and also one Carmelite saint is presented. It’s a beautiful combination of learning the scriptures and growing deeper in spirituality.

It is intense in that people spend about 3 hours per day for five days but it is to the advantage of people who do not have such time to give for their growth and learning outside summer times due to work and life commitments.

The programme aims to offer people the exciting opportunity for both biblical and spiritual formation – clergy, laity and the inquisitive.

The programme may appeal to those who love Carmelite spirituality, want to know about Carmelite saints, go deeper in their prayer life and in their relationship with God. It is open to Carmelites and people who are not Carmelites nor Catholics.

What to Expect

Topics will include the relationship between his writings and his life-story; the place of his poetry in his overall message; the help which the prologues to his major works offer; and criteria for reading which we can dig out of each of those major works. The hope is that our summer school will enable us to read John with perhaps greater ease and relish, and certainly to let him speak to us with his authentic voice.

There’ll be opportunities for Guided prayer, silent reflection, and spiritual accompaniment. 

People will come away from it enriched in many ways. They’ll get to know more about St John of the Cross, gain deeper insight into the scriptures used for lectio divina, learn in the company of others and establish new friends, advance in their journey towards intimacy with God.

They will be able to avail of this from the comfort of their homes and even if on holiday they can access it.

The videos will be available to them up to 6 months after the course.

In normal times, those attending in-person will have the opportunity to MAKE IT A HOLIDAY.

  • Enjoy the Priory grounds
  • Explore University of Oxford Colleges
  • Discover world-class arts & culture
  • Visit Littlemore – St. John Henry Newman’s home
  • Enjoy Shakespeare’s plays at Blenheim Palace and a lot more!

Summer School Schedule

Monday 5th July 2021

15:15   Zoom opens

15:30   Welcome & Introduction

15:45   Guided Prayer

16:00   First Input Session

16:50   Coffee/tea break

17:10   Second Input Session

18:00  Break

18:15   Group Discussion/Reflection

18:45   Plenary: Questions & Reflections

19:00   End of Session

Tuesday 6th July 2021

15:15   Zoom opens

15:30   Lectio Divina (optional)

16:00   First Input Session

16:00   Coffee/tea break

17:10   Second Input Session

18:00  Break

18:15   Group Discussion/Reflection

18:45   Plenary: Questions & Reflections

19:00   End of Session

Wednesday 7th July 2021

15:15   Zoom opens

15.30   Lectio Divina (optional)

16:00   First Input Session

16:50   Coffee/tea break

17:10   Second Input Session

18:00  Break

18:15   Group Discussion/Reflection

18:45   Plenary: Questions & Reflections

19:00   End of Session

Thursday 8th July 2021

15:15   Zoom opens

15:30   Lectio Divina (optional)

16:00   First Input Session

16:50   Coffee/tea break

17:10   Second Input Session

18:00  Break

18:15   Group Discussion/Reflection

18:45   Plenary: Questions & Reflections

19:00   End of Session

Friday 9th July 2021

15:15   Zoom opens

15:30   Lectio Divina (optional)

16:00   First Input Session

16:50   Coffee/tea break

17:10   Second Input Session

18:00  Break

18:15   Group Discussion/Reflection

18:45   Plenary: Questions & Reflections

19.00   End of Session

Registration Details

By registering, you will be enrolled in the full course.

PRICE: £180