Manresa House of Retreats is a spiritual haven nestled in Convent, Louisiana, situated along the picturesque banks of the Mississippi River. This retreat center specializes in three-day preached retreats, steeped in silence, and rooted in the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius Loyola. In this section, we explore the historical backdrop of Manresa and its evolution into a retreat space.
Manresa House of Retreats is located in Convent, Louisiana on the banks of the Mississippi River midway between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. It offers three-day preached retreats, made in silence, based on the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius Loyola. These retreats are conducted for men only, through an agreement with Cenacle Retreat House for Women in the New Orleans area.
Delving into the rich history of Manresa, this section sheds light on the campus's historic buildings dating back to the 19th Century. The transition from Jefferson College to a Marist Fathers' Catholic school sets the stage for the eventual establishment of Manresa House of Retreats by the Jesuit Fathers in 1931.
Some of the historic and picturesque buildings on the 130-acre campus date from the early 19th Century, when Manresa was the site of Jefferson College, a private school for sons of plantation owners. Between the Civil War and the Great Depression the Marist Fathers conducted the college as a Catholic school. The Jesuits Fathers purchased the property in 1931 as the site for a retreat house.
This section explores the variety of retreats offered at Manresa, including the duration, structure, and the spiritual direction provided. Details about the weekend retreats and mid-week retreats, along with the role of the retreat director, are highlighted.
Retreats are offered every weekend except for the last weekend of the year; these begin on Thursday night and end early Sunday afternoon. In addition, six “mid-week retreats” are offered from Sunday night through early Wednesday afternoon.
An assigned retreat Director preaches eleven retreat conferences (or “talks”) during the course of the three days. Each conference lasts around 30 minutes. A staff of trained Jesuit priests is available for individual conferences. Daily Mass and other devotions and activities are available to fill out the retreat.
This section details the logistics of the retreat experience, from the capacity of each retreat group to the age requirements for attendees. It also emphasizes the inclusive nature of Manresa, welcoming men of various faiths to partake in the retreats.
The capacity for each retreat group is 111 and no exceptions are allowed; the average is 108 men. No set fee is required, but there is a suggested donation. All contributions are anonymous. Manresa is a Catholic retreat house, but men of other faiths are welcome to attend the retreats.
The minimum age requirement for attending a Manresa retreat with one of the 57 retreat groups is 18 years of age. The man's 18th birthday must occur prior to the retreat date he is attending. There are no exceptions to this rule.
In this section, the steps for making a reservation at Manresa are outlined. It provides information on the 57 retreat groups, their captains, and the reservation process for new retreatants interested in embarking on a spiritual journey at Manresa.
There are 57 retreats groups, and each group has a number of “captains” who receive reservations from men who want to make a retreat. All groups have a waiting list, but it is possible to find a vacancy.
To make a reservation to attend a retreat, new retreatants should consult the current schedule of retreats which lists the captains, and contact one of them. A new retreatant should contact the group whose retreat falls at a convenient time. Some flexibility is often needed.
If you are interested in attending a retreat at Manresa, please visit our Scheduling page.
This section invites readers to explore the dedicated individuals who contribute to the spiritual experience at Manresa.
It directs them to the Staff and Priest directory for a deeper understanding of the guiding figures behind the retreats.
View Staff and Priest directory
These exercises invite the "retreatant" or "exercitant" to meditate on central aspects of Christian faith, such as creation, sin and forgiveness, calling, and