Originally offered as a part of seminarian formation, it has become a popular offering for priests and transitional deacons as well. Exploring the deep desires of the human heart, this conference is truly transformational. You’ll come to understand how disordered desires are rooted in underlying holy desires and unmet needs, and tied to our false identities. You will learn how to heal the underlying wounds and engage productively in the battle of desires, in order to find the true fulfillment of your desires.
Sample for Talk 1: The Desires of Our Heart
To find events and resources for this series, click below:
“It was especially meaningful to experience this encounter along with priests and other seminarians who are seeking to be vessels of the Father’s love.”
“A week of great freedom to let him lead me into the areas where he wanted me to be healed and where I knew I needed much healing.”
“At the end of the retreat, I recognized the deeper desire of my heart toward His divine love and of a deeper interior freedom to want to love others with the same love that I have received from the Father."
“This week gave me new insights and deeper understanding, and helped me to integrate much of my seminary formation.”
“This week allowed me to go deeper into the healing experience that God is leading me through so as to encounter His immense love for me as a Beloved Son.”
“God met me by the living testimony of the speakers and by taking me where He wanted to heal me in the prayer times.”
“I received a special grace of feeling the Lord's particular love for me even in my brokenness. Before the retreat, I had such a difficult time reconciling the Lord's love for me with my brokenness. I tried to 'manage' my darkness, the sins and wounds of my past, and THEN come to God for His love, to seek forgiveness when "I" felt worthy of it. Intellectually, I realized the inherent lie in this, but I was nevertheless living out of it by hiding the darkness of my life from Him. My prayer is now focusing on not measuring God by my own limitations, but truly reverencing His goodness to me.”
“Overall, I would give the retreat 9.5/10! The retreat team was excellent in their content, relatability, and presentation style. They spoke from the heart and entered into the vulnerability of their own lives when teaching. It helped me to also be vulnerable to how God wanted to work in me.”
“This retreat allowed me to see that my disordered desires are not necessarily a cross or suffering that I will have to endure forever. God called me away from focusing on what I thought was the "problem" and instead directed my attention to the relationship. God affirmed my identity in Him as his beloved Son and reinforced my desire to become one of his priests.”
“This was perhaps the best retreat I have ever been on! It was actually what I needed right now!”
“I began the week not knowing what to expect. At the end of the week I thanked God deeply for the retreat. It helped me find areas of my life in need of healing and it helped me use the means for healing them.”
“It was incredibly transforming.”
“I enjoyed the whole retreat. I felt the Holy Spirit throughout the retreat. I know I have been changed in a good way from all that I learned. I give this retreat a 10 out of 10… I know God strengthened me to have courage to say yes to him and let him take control of my life.”
“I truly felt the love God has for me as a person no matter my sins, a real love that I have not felt before.”
“I really enjoyed the conferences. They were very informative. I was able to connect with things that I have been running from for a long time… I finally truly felt the love of the Father enter my heart. It overflowed in me with tears of joy and peace.”
“Amazing down-to-earth presentation that’s not afraid to talk about taboo subjects of our human experience/brokenness.”
“God met me in my brothers… helping me understand I am not alone in my suffering. Jesus substantially suffers with me and helps me endure. I was able to witness my seminarian brother heal and feel the weight of a damaging past caused by disordered desires lift off his shoulders.”
“I had a very positive experience. The talks clearly and concisely touched on delicate topics that are not talked about in most seminaries…. I enjoyed the combination of videos, activities, sharing, and talks. The workbook was very well organized and helpful.”
“The wealth of knowledge is substantial, but the information was well spaced out and digestible. The subject matter (desires) was addressed from a very solid Catholic perspective with good reference to both classical and contemporary thought-leaders on the topic.”
“Eye-opening. I have had talks and conferences related to this topic before, but this experience has been far more impactful…The talks on the formation of identity and desires was profound.”
“If there was one word I had to choose to describe my experience it would be “transformative”… I could feel the Holy Spirit stirring my heart… The love and communion I felt with God, His holy ones, and my brothers were beyond anything I could have imagined.”
"Very good. I came to a deeper awareness of my woundedness in the area of peer group belonging. I’m looking forward to transformation here."
"I was hopeful entering and I am hopeful leaving…. Liturgy was the best. Through talks, I was able to offer the pain of my wounds/roots in the offertory of the Mass."
" Stellar. A welling up of the Spirit."
"Uplifting and humbling. Had never approached the connection between all my sins and their common root."
" Blessed, Transformative, a touch of glory. Like digging through rubble and finding gold. Confession was very powerful and helped me experience wounds as a place for healing and uniting with the wounds of Christ. In prayer, being able to bless my dad as his son and a priest, and find deep hope, power and love. Experiencing the face of God with Sr. Miriam."
"Very graced. This retreat gave me great insights as well and many wonderful points for prayer. I was in great need of a restful, prayerful retreat on this subject. God met me in the encouragement to open my wounds to his healing graces."
“Deepening-enlightening, affirming, healing, empowering, and yet humbling, definitely exciting. Powerful and surprising time of healing and revelation in meditation (group prayer). Very evident the Holy Spirit was at work.”
“It was very good. I wish I had this in seminary. The connections of our spiritual, psychological and physical lives and how Jesus desires to be in it is incredibly powerful and transformative”
“This is the best retreat I have ever been on- Abundant fruit, God’s grace, love, mercy. Healing of deep wounds in group prayer experience-Wednesday in chapel”
“I appreciated the experience that all the speakers brought to the talks, but meeting one on one with a prayer leader was probably the most beneficial for me.”
“It was all very good. If there was something that felt that was a bit more exceptional, it would be the human sculpting. Very good. A peculiar but great way to engage and to ultimately be "in sync" with what the Trinity was trying to communicate and reveal to us... super awesome.”
“The grace that I received was the rejection of a lie that I was cursed and affirming of the truth that I have been born so that the glory of the Lord might be revealed. I feel like a new-born creature.”
“God met me in his humble, hidden, and quiet manner. There is no particular "moment" that strikes me in some overwhelming manner, but the retreat as a whole was supremely excellent. It felt like the healing of Naaman in the Jordan: a very uneventful moment, a very "ordinary" experience, and yet after his immersion, he went home clean. That is how God met me on this retreat.”
“God revealed to me past wounds and false identities taken on as a result which allowed me to begin the process of bringing them to Jesus. Every talk was a time of grace and the experience of brotherhood with the other priests was a great grace as well.”
“It was grace filled. I received a lot of healing. The talks were very insightful.”
“Excellent; a real gift to my priesthood.”
“Excellent! It was a wonderful experience. I gained a new perspective on my faith journey.”
“Most fruitful retreat I've experienced in my 14 years of priesthood!”
“I left renewed and re-energized for ministry.”
“My overall experience was amazing. One of rejuvenation, healing, and empowerment.”
"The retreat was an environment of love and safety that allowed me to be vulnerable and encounter the perfect love of the Father. A love that continues to transform me in order to become a vessel of encounter for others in my future priestly ministry."
"I am immensely grateful for the ministry of the John Paul II Healing Center."
"During the retreat, my encounter with God through prayers and contemplation helped me be aware and so convicted that the Father’s desire to heal me is far greater than my desire to get healed."
Equipping for Pastoral Ministry
Enrich and animate your ministry during this weeklong retreat. You’ll experience a relaxing, but fruitful time of personal healing and practical ministry application, including valuable insight into leading those you serve into a deeper relationship with Jesus.
Reflecting on Jesus’ relationship with the Father and Holy Spirit as the foundation of your own vocation and ministry, you will have opportunities for personal reflection, receive personal prayer ministry and enjoy fellowship with your brother priests, while learning to minister deeper healing within the Sacrament of Reconciliation, spiritual direction, pastoral ministry.
To find events for this series, click below:
“The modeling exercise from a place of abiding was very powerful. The prayer sessions and praying over each other were very powerful. Just hearing your speakers brought me to tears even before we did any prayer. God used many people and methods to open my heart.”
“I thought all the talks were excellent. I appreciated praying with my brother priests, especially for healing and the grace of the week.”
“Overwhelming tremendous the fire of God’s love is in this community of the JPII Healing Center. My brother priests and I were immersed in the fire of God’s love and experienced tremendous healing.”
Providing the opportunity for a deep, immersive experience, the summer program provides an integrative, month-long spiritual journey (options for single week attendance available). Divided into 4 weeklong segments, you’ll encounter a variety of settings, yet find a program with an intentional rhythm to foster personal and spiritual growth in a restful environment.
Week One “Restoring the Glory”
During this week, you’ll have a reserved space at this popular ‘once per year’ conference, touching on personal and sexual identity, how to relate to God in your personhood, in chastity and celibacy. This conference is also open to lay and religious, providing opportunities for interaction with others while engaging in personal reflection, daily Mass, the Sacrament of Reconciliation and personal prayer experience.
Week Two “Discerning of Spirits”- (Priest Led Silent Retreat)
The depth of week 1 is followed by a guided, silent retreat, focusing on the “discerning of spirits” During this week you will have opportunity to understand the movements of your heart as well as the spiritual influences that affect your daily choices. Includes adoration, daily Mass, the Sacrament of Reconciliation and spiritual direction.
Week Three “Healing the Whole Person”
Experience Jesus in His mission of healing! Physical, spiritual and emotional healing, central to the Church’s life and 2,000 year tradition, come to life today. The uniquely engaging format will help you see and experience God’s healing love in the areas of our brokenness through teaching, personal prayer, personal reflection, adoration and the Sacraments.
Week Four –“Equipping for Pastoral Ministry”
Learn to facilitate prayer in the confidence of I AM (Inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Abiding in God, and Moving in union with Him and the recipient). As a part of the training, you’ll see how healing prayer is an essential dimension of the Church’s life, through Scripture, Church teaching, and Sacred Tradition. In addition, you will discover and experience the unique ways you can personally help people encounter God and walk in greater freedom. The focus will be on a personal and ministerial application. Availability of the Sacraments and daily prayer.
To find events for this series, click below:
"This month-long seminarian program has been nothing short of life changing!"
"Because this ministry is faithful to the Church and colors all of its content with the wisdom of the Church, it is easy to see clearly that the human condition is truly that perfectly integrated tapestry where nothing should be fragmented."
"I was born again from the heart. No words will ever describe what you have done for me. Every seminarian can and will benefit from this extraordinary ministry. Simply…WOW."
"It was a good experience overall. I enjoyed the flow of the day, from academic in the morning to witness/application in the afternoon."
"Awesome! I had a wonderful healing encounter with the Lord and grew in a greater sense of communion with my brothers."
"It helped me understand and accept myself and why I do the things I do."
"Very positive. I came with no expectations, asking God to keep me open and willing to receive. I allowed myself to be vulnerable causing me to discover areas of pain and sin that I hadn't touch before. I am leaving knowing I have begun the process of healing."
"I felt greater peace and confidence that God will be with me in my ministry."
"My prayer ministry time has opened the door to deeper healing between my family, myself and God. Thank you!"
"It was amazing experiencing prayer from my brothers: it drew us into a closer friendship and brotherhood, which I am sure it will never be lost. It was a joy."
"It's been a deep and personal experience of the Spirit with His presence and His action in prayer... an invitation to a deeper faith in the beautiful power of His grace and love, to give Him more place in my life, to let Him guide and move and lead my priesthood, my ministry and my personal life."
"I think the whole 4 weeks really build on each other really well. At the end of each week I kept saying 'this was my favorite/best week', but I really did love all of them. I have so much confidence now in myself (my growing identity in God's love), in being able to recognize His presence and voice in my daily life, and a greater sense of my spiritual gifts. Thank you!"
"Great experience... I believe this has helped me begin to 'clean the temple' to better minister as God's beloved son."
"Anointed, liberating, challenging, educating. Life giving. A powerful experience. A growing journey to knowing myself. A spiritual refreshing time. God is good... God is real."
"I had a great experience. It was peaceful. I enjoyed the companionship and community."
"I felt I was in the presence of Saints (living and risen). It was such a powerful encounter with God's will, His love and mercy, that it overcame and transformed the evil strongholds, lies, vows and wounds of my life. Setting me free into a whole new life in Jesus Christ."
"It was amazing, life-changing. I learned so much. My heart was truly pierced openned. The practical exercises helped greatly. The material presented was all very well-developed, intellectually stimulating, concrete and detailed. It was very Spirit-led. I appreciated the bonding and deep friendships I have been able to form."
"So incredibly grace filled. I grew in love with the Father and not fearing what is next- now I trust."
"I really enjoyed the retreat. I could see clearly that grace is working here. It has changed the way I view the Church, the spiritual life and seeing my own gifts too. I also enjoyed the integration of human aspects and how the material is so easy to read."
“Redemptive suffering and healing. I think this talk showed me in a profound way how I am not nor will I ever be alone in suffering.”
“It was such an honor to be here this week. The love I received and the knowledge I gained will be a treasure for me as I continue my healing journey in the heart of Jesus. I feel so incredibly blessed by this. I was able to go deep with the Trinity to find the courage and strength I need to break free.”
“I found the whole experience one of secure love, warmth, gentleness and healing. It was a place of safety in which I could show my vulnerability and be loved by the Lord through this experience back into wholeness. Every person wanting to find peace, joy and wholeness would find this retreat a gift!”
“It was a very blessed week! There was so much grace and peace when [the team] would share. I really appreciate their vulnerability and authenticity and obvious love and experience of the Lord. It was a gift for me to have time to work on my soul with the Lord, receive prayer ministry and just rest.”
“For the first time in my life I was able to begin to journey to accept my feminine identity so that I can be the bride/spouse that I desire to be.”
“Very positive. Well worth the journey interiorly as well as exteriorly. I would recommend this to others for sure.”
Permanent Deacons and those in formation are welcome in most conferences (except those for priests and seminarians only). We provide diocesan sponsored conferences exclusively for permanent deacons and those in formation.
“I really enjoyed doing this with my husband and the Deaconate class. It was more intimate and helps us grow closer as a group.”
“Very spiritual! I really needed this weekend to deal with wounds that were impacting my spirituality. I was feeling disconnected from the Holy Spirit which led to fear about my worthiness to serve as a deacon.”
“I experienced the grace to face my brokenness and capitalize on my wholeness in Christ.”
“Powerful, peaceful and joyful. I received affirmation of how much God loves me and will always be with me and how much He does for me if I just let go and trust in Him.”
“Spiritually wonderful! Liberating.”
“It has been a blessed weekend to be with Dr Bob, Bart, Kim and my classmates. A weekend with the Lord in healing. I am on the verge to conquer my fear and my insecurity.”
“I feel so blessed and grateful to be heal. I found through the sessions, God has blessed me in so many ways, even with my physical illness.”
“This workshop was a great experience for me. It has helped me come to better understand where areas of healing is needed and tools to work through these needs.”
“The JPII Healing Center is always very insightful and exciting, I look forward every time to learn something new from the team and most importantly how am I going to put it to use in my own life and ministry.”
“I have received clarity of mission.”
“Was a wonderful spiritual experience.”
“My experience was very positive. I feel like true healing has begun in my heart. I feel like God is helping me with my fear.”
“The weekend has reignited my prayer life and what it means to speak with Christ.”
“Well organized; efficient agenda; fun, deep, Catholic.”
“I was touched by Bart’s talk about the state of the Church nowadays and its future. The image of the winter and spring time and the encouragement for us deacon candidates to live faithfully the call we have received at this special time in the life of the Church.”
“The experience was very fulfilling. This needs to be made available to all Catholics. I was able to forgive my father for not being there for me.”
“A necessary part of our formation. Getting additional retreats along our journey helps us heal-become more whole. And it will be beneficial as we work with others and help them heal.”
“This is my 4th retreat with you, and today I have experienced healing in a very strong way. I felt more open this time. I’m so grateful and blessed.”
“I’ve received great courage to trust more in God the Father. I’m freed from self-support and control and give the Trinity everything, having great confidence that God’s Divine Plan for my life is sufficient enough!”
“Though tired from my work week, I feel peaceful and energized because of my time spent here.”