Spirit of Beguines: Retreat Itinerary
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About WholeHearted & Matthew Fox
About Creation Spirituality
CS Inspired Practices
The Four Paths
Germany Birthing Visions 2013
Four Retreats 2011-12



Our 10 Day Itinerary

Wednesday, March 13, 2013 Depart from your home destination for arrival in Frankfurt, Germany by mid-morning on Thursday, March 14th.


Day 1: Thursday, March 14th, travel by bus from the airport (if applicable) to Hotel Jagdschloss Niederwald in Rüdesheim am Rhein. http://www.niederwald.de/en.html and have a slow relaxing arrival with a walk in the beautiful park adjoining the hotel, enjoy lunch and a 3 course dinner and participate in retreat welcome and introductions.


Days two, three and four are intentionally planned to help participants experience the greening region that so influenced St. Hildegard. While those traveling from abroad get their ground-feet and recuperate from jetlag we engage physically in our environment and allow the Rhine River, rolling hills, and the special places where Hildegard lived nourish us. This is part of the path of joy and awe and of the outward journey.


Day 2: Friday, March 15th, we begin our exploration of Hildegard's Homeland with a trip to Disibodenberg. Although a visitor of the Disibodenberg today finds only ruins as testimonies of an important past, the sacred atmosphere of this place will impress you and will take you under its spell. For it is here, where Hildegard spent most of the first half of her life (1106 - 1147). We will travel to Disibodenberg by bus and ferry from our hotel, explore the ruins with the help of a guided tour in English, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and then travel back to our hotel. Dinner that night will be on your own with options of staying at the hotel or venturing out on the town of Ruedesheim.


Day 3: Saturday, March 16th,   Around 1147 Hildegard left Disibodenberg Abbey with about twenty of her fellow nuns and created her own first abbey, the Rupertsberg Abbey, above the grave of Saint Rupertus. Hildegard lived and worked at the Rupertsberg Abbey until her death in 1179. Today, we will begin our journey by traveling to the Rupertsberg Ruins again by bus and ferry. Yes, we will be on the Rhine river many times this week, following in Hildegard's footsteps. Under the wings of an English-speaking guide, we will tour the Rupertsberg Ruins. We will then continue on with our guide to the Hildegard Museum and Botanical Garden with an additional tour of the Rochus Chapel to view in particular the two side altars consecrated to Saints Hildegard and Rupert. The Hildegard altar by Jakob Busch shows scenes from the life of Saint Hildegard on eight reliefs. Lunch will be provided at the Forum outdoor restaurant next to the chapel. You will then have some free time to explore the city of Bingen on your own, before heading back across the Rhine and up the hillside to our hotel. We will then relax together over dinner at the hotel, included in your retreat fee.


Day 4: Sunday, March 17th, we will again be picked up by bus and taken to the current Benedictine Abbey in Eibingen. We will explore the Abbey and then continue on to visit the Church where the holy shrine of St. Hildegard is kept. This church is part of the second Abbey which Hildegard founded when she was 67. Following this we will walk through local vineyards and enjoy wine tasting and a light meal with a local wine grower. Upon returning to the hotel in the afternoon we will then gather as a group for our own Passion Sunday Service, followed by dinner at the hotel, included in your retreat fee.


Beginning at the end of day four through mid-day on day six we have planned times of learning, contemplation and engaging practices that nourish the seeds and visions that grow in the fertile dark and the richness of mystery. In these last days of winter we will honor the depths that give rise to new growth; part of the journey inward.


Day 5: Monday, March 18th, we will spend the morning with the leadership and wisdom of Rev. Matthew Fox as he teaches from his newest book on Hildegard and explores the significance of Hildegard’s life in the 12th century as well as in the 21st century. After lunch at the hotel we will explore practices of deep and creative listening & contemplation that support the process of discerning one’s own divine images and perceiving Divine guidance.  Dinner will be on your own with options of staying at the hotel or venturing out on the town of Ruedesheim.


Day 6: Tuesday, March 19th, again we spend the morning under the tutelage of Rev. Matthew Fox as he helps us explore the meaning and depth behind Hildegard’s Illuminations. After lunch at the hotel we will engage in more creative practices that shine light on the gifts, voice and beauty of each participant.  Dinner at the hotel, included in your retreat fee.


Beginning at the end of day six through day eight our intention is to explore the path of creativity that Hildegard so beautifully embodied. The principles of Creation Spirituality proclaim that everyone is an artist and we are called to be co-creators with the Creator. During these days we hope your creative juices will be nourished and that whether it be through writing, drawing, singing, storytelling, bodywork, playing outside  or any other favorite creative expression of yours – you will feel inspired and encouraged. (Additionally, a conference room will be available 24/7 as a studio for participants to explore their own emerging images).


Day 7: Wednesday, March 20th, the Spring Equinox! Today we will venture out on the Rhine River for a boat trip. Imagine steep vineyards, world-famous cliffs full of nooks and crannies as well as proud and defiant castles. En route, we will also explore the legend of the Loreley, a beautiful maiden with long blonde hair, who has been known for centuries as a symbol full of passion. This trip on a ship is ideal for romanticists and brings the fairytale Rhine to life. We return to the hotel for a relaxing evening and dinner, included in your retreat fee.


Day 8: Thursday, March 21st, today we fully engage in the personal symbols that have been arising through dreams, prayer, contemplation and creative practices. Both in private exploration and in community sharing we will illumine the divine in ourselves and each other. We will celebrate the births and future births that are emerging. Dinner will be on your own with options of staying at the hotel or venturing out on the town of Ruedesheim


Day 9: Friday, March 22nd, Finishing up our retreat time together with a focus on “Taking It to the Streets”; the celebration of transformation and the strength of the prophetic voice. We will share our intentions with one another and identify the tender and bold ways in which we can take our own illumined visions back into our communities.  We will conclude our time together by 3:00PM so that participants have a little time to shop for souvenirs and explore the town. Dinner will be on your own with options of staying at the hotel or venturing out on the town of Ruedesheim


Day 10: March 23rd 2013, Leave the hotel in time for your flight from Frankfort. Enjoy a day of travel and transition to home.


Retreat schedule subject to change as needed according to the leadership of the facilitators and local leaders.


Click here to get details on cost and registration: Birthing Visions Registration Information


an epiphany enables you to sense creation not as something completed, but as    constantly becoming, evolving, ascending. this transports you from a place where    there is nothing new to a place where there is nothing old, where everything    renews itself, where heaven and earth rejoice as at the moment of creation.  


abraham isaac kook    from painted prayers by jody uttal