Skip the Latte! Give $10 on the 10th

Skip the latte!

Ten was Sue’s favorite number.

Ten dollars.

What does that mean to you?

A couple of lattes?

Lunch out with friends?

A nice glass of wine at your favorite restaurant?

But when hundreds of people invest $10 each in OLC. . .  just IMAGINE the possibilities!

When you donate $10 on the 10th of each month (or whatever you can) to OLC, we can plan improvements to our facility that will make your retreat experience better; better mattresses, better sound system, even better heating and cooling for our building.

So, please, this month, skip the latte. Donate $10 on the 10th.

OLC Thanks you

$10 on the 10th

(To set up a monthly donation, click the box next to "I would like this donation to automatically repeat each month," under the amount of your donation.)


A Faith Perspective

The first thing I do each day is to feed my cat, Abby. Then, in the stillness of the early morning, I begin my prayer ritual and writing routine. It lasts about an hour. I pray to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Our Lady of Lourdes, and to St. Anthony and St. Jude, among other saints. I also read a passage from the Daily Word, a Christian publication. Abby brushes up against my legs as light slowly filters through the living room windows. I have a conversation with God in which I voice my petitions but also thank Him for His many blessings. I feel peaceful and serene.

I also keep a Gratitude journal in which I write down the things I am grateful for. At the top of the list are my family (including Abby), my friends, my co-workers, and supporters. I am grateful for big and small things. I am grateful for each day and for good health and happiness.

I record my thoughts and feelings in a separate, bound journal. I write about what is going on in my life now and make plans for the future. I have been keeping journals since 1979 (with the exception of a few years). My closets and storage area are filled with boxes of journals.

My morning routine has helped me recover from bi-polar disorder, which has spanned forty years. I use my journals to write about my struggles, hopes and dreams, and joys. I am calmer when I pray and write and better able to face the world.

Bi-polar illness is characterized by extreme mood swings which can be debilitating at times. It can zap my energy and make me immobile.  Over the years, I’ve had 22 hospitalizations. But, my faith is central to my recovery. God heals all wounds. I pray continuously throughout the day. Being in recovery is a prerequisite for my human service position.

In 2000, I began work as a peer support assistant for Chrysalis Center, located in Hartford. A stable work environment allowed me to, not only grow, but to thrive. I have been working there for the past 17 years. My prayer ritual and writing routine have proved to be invaluable. I am calmer at work and I handle stress better. I work in a busy unit. My spiritual director calls me the “face of Christ,” though, because I listen to the clients’ stories and serve as a role model for them. In this way, my work is also a form of prayer.

By: Debra Deptula


May at Our Lady of Calvary

Happy Easter!

May the Joy of the Risen Christ be present in your families and all those you know. This is such a special time of our year. Let’s journey together in the light of Christ as we move towards Pentecost!

We just finished up our Theme Retreat Season for 2016-17. It was a truly wonderful season for our retreatants. We enjoyed having you with us each weekend. When you are here, OLC comes alive!

There is still lots of activity going on right through July. Take a look below at some of the exciting programs coming up in May. Please register soon as the programs are beginning to fill.

Choose Joy

Presenter: JoAnne Ceccarelli Egan, M.T.S; LCSW
May 3, 2017
Dinner: 6:00 pm
Program: 7:00-9:00 pm

You can choose to be happy and joyful. You can live a joyful life, no matter what is going on around you. In this evening’s presentation, you will discover ways to return to “childlike joy”, and change the way you view life. You will uncover the unhelpful habits and pitfalls that rob you of joy. More importantly, you will learn some easy ways to change your thought pattern, and develop some customs that help you be more serene. Join us and liberate the joyful person within as you begin to see happiness and wonder in each moment.

Click the link for more information and to register:

Images of God
images of god

Presenter Sheri Dursin
May 10, 2017
Dinner: 6:00 pm
Program: 7:00-9:00 pm

Join Sheri Dursin as she explores four images of God found is Scripture that can inform and inspire your faith; God as Light, God as our Shepherd, God as our Rock, and God as Living Water. This evening retreat includes a presentation, prayer, music, time for silent reflection, and time for optional sharing.

Call (860) 677-8519 or click the link for more information and to register:

Responding to Life’s Ordinary “Whatever” Moments

Presenter: Sister Pauline Semkow, RSM
May 17 @ 9:00 am – 1:00 pm – Includes lunch

A morning to look lovingly, gently and without judgment at how we welcome, embrace, accept and discover what these moments offer us. Program includes input, quiet reflection time, sharing, and prayer.

Call (860) 677-8519 or click the link for more information and to register:

Healing Oils of the Bible
healing oils

Presenter: Alicia Clendennin
May 24, 2017
Dinner: 6:00 pm
Program: 7:00-9:00 pm

Essential oils have been an integral part of the daily lives of people for over ten thousand years. They have been used to support the body, mind and spirit since before the time of record keeping as we know it. In this workshop, we will focus on the twelve oils mentioned most frequently in the Bible. We will learn the Bible verses that reference these oils and we will compare how they were used in Biblical time with how they are used today.

Call (860) 677-8519 or click the link for more information and to register:

The month of May also brings us the OLC Golf Tournament. This year the tournament is on  Thursday, May 25th at Tunxis Plantation Country Club in Farmington, CT. Register online or give us a call at OLC.

There’s a New Spirit at OLC!

Hope to see you here soon.

With the Peace & Joy of Easter,

Ron Miceli


Try a New Perspective!

Spring is here! Nature is coming alive and you are invited to come alive. Are you interested? Through the course of my life, I have discovered some easy ways to become light hearted and happy. What if you too adopted this attitude in your life? What if you tried one slight change in your perspective, in order to become more fully the person God is calling you to be? I have written up a few ideas that you may wish to try in order to develop a New Perspective on life.

  1. You can only change yourself. Make the decision to abandon thoughts of changing any situation or anyone but yourself. The only control you really have is over your own response to a given person or event. You do not have to let another person’s dysfunction create distress for you. When you discover that you generally get negative or complain more when you are with a certain person, recognize that they are sending off negativity. Try to step away if possible or look for distractions. Release your illusion that you can change that person or circumstance; you will then have more energy, time and attention to focus on improving your own life.
  2. Practice an attitude of “Reframing”. Since we are human, there are going to be times when we are not pleased about a situation or a person. Rather than make it into a catastrophe, say the least negative statement that is still true and you will find that it will bother you less. Instead of using the phrase “I hate”, substitute “I don’t care for” or “I don’t like”. They are gentler words that are still true but evoke less intensity.
  3. Make neutral statements about challenging events. Try this exercise. Think about something that you are going to do tomorrow. Put the activity into a sentence and say “I have to __________”. How does your body feel? Burdened or stressed? Now try repeating it using the phrase, “I am going to________”. Notice how much more relaxed your body feels about the same activity. We are impacted by our attitude and words. If we talk as if something is catastrophic, we experience it that way. If we speak more impartially about a situation or event, we will act as if that is the case.
  4. Create a list of “Touchstones”. Write a list of hobbies, places and people that fill you with joy or activities that you find intriguing and would like to explore. Pull out your calendar and make a date to do some of these activities. Keep the list of touchstones handy and choose to do another action on a day that you are bored or sad.
  5. Discover your passion. What fills you with enthusiasm? What would you love to do? People rarely excel at tasks they do not feel passionate about. When you attempt to follow someone else’s idea of your “passion”, you produce results but they take more time and energy. When you are living your passion, and doing what God has called you to do, you will find that you excel more effortlessly and elatedly. Get out a pencil and pad and fill in the phrase “I love to…” Write this 10 times and see what pops up.

Life is filled with endless hope and possibilities. What if you were too? The invitation is to create positive actions in your life. What I would like to propose is that you look at that list of activities that make you feel most alive or intrigued and explore it or incorporate it into your life for the next thirty days. See if it helps you develop a new perspective and embrace your life more fully.

If you are interested in additional ways to be more positive, I will be presenting a program called “Choose Joy” at OLC on Wednesday May 3. Click the link for more info:

JoAnne Ceccarelli-Egan LCSW is a motivational speaker and has a private counseling practice at Our Lady of Calvary

sari skirt

How to Wear Your Sari Skirt

If you bought a sari skirt from Darn Good Yarn at OLC’s gift shop, congratulations! You’ve got style and a generous heart for helping others and the environment. Each skirt is handmade by co-ops in India out of recycled saris and turned into the beautiful finished skirt you see. With your help, these artisans are able to sustain year-round employment.

Now that the weather is finally warming up, you may be looking for direction on all the amazing ways you can wear your beautiful sari skirt.

Aside from wearing it like a skirt, there are tons of ways to wear it; like a dress, shirt or a wrap. Another great feature is that the skirts are reversible so feel free to try any of these wearing options reversed too!

Check out the graphic above to take your sari skirt from a skirt to a whole new outfit!