On November 27-29, Catholic Chaplains in working in state institutions gathered for Retreat and Training at Villa Maria del Mar Retreat Center in Santa Cruz, CA. 41 Chaplains from across the state gathered. They work at CDCR adult and youth prisons, Developmental Hospitals, State Hospitals and Veterans Homes. It not only provided an opportunity for the chaplains to be together in a spiritual setting, but also to share best practices and develop new ones. These days were facilitated by Matt Spotts, a Jesuit Novice who is mentored by and assists Father George Williams, Catholic Chaplain at San Quentin.
Here are some of the Chaplains’ reflections on their time together:
“It was wonderful to have this time to refresh myself and to enforce our beliefs. I could see my fellow chaplains and it is great and overall, I renewed my commitment with God, Myself and the church. It was very successful. Thank you!”
“It was so uplifting!... I experienced rejuvenation and healing these few days. I did not realize how my soul longed for this.”
“This moment to come together was incredibly rewarding. Matt did a super job in his talks, … I am thankful for [the] love and care for chaplaincy and its work.”
“Very motivational toward continuing and improving our service.”