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College Hosts 2019 Retreat for Los Angeles’ Deacons

College Hosts 2019 Retreat for Los Angeles’ Deacons

Posted: July 1, 2019

In late June Thomas Aquinas College’s California campus hosted a retreat for permanent deacons serving the Archdiocese of Los Angeles’ Santa Barbara pastoral region. Over the course of their four days on campus, the retreatants stayed and held conferences in the College’s residence halls, took meals in St. Joseph Commons, and attended Sunday Mass in Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Chapel — all while contemplating Our Lord’s dying words on the Cross.

Dr. Kaczor and Bishop BarronDr. Kaczor and Bishop BarronTo aid them in their meditations, the men studied Cries of Jesus from the Cross, a collection of essays by Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen — a personal hero to the Most Rev. Robert E. Barron, Auxiliary Bishop of Los Angeles, who came to campus and offered Mass on the third day of the retreat. Leading the retreat was Dr. Christopher Kaczor, a professor of philosophy at Loyola Marymount University and the author of 14 books about the Faith and Christian morality.

“The last words of a dying person are often tremendously important,” explained Dr. Christopher Kaczor. “The last words of Jesus are no exception.” As part of this retreat, the deacons thought and prayed “about the words of Jesus from the Cross,” specifically, “what He said to His friends and to His enemies, and to His mother Mary, and what His words mean for us today.”

This year’s retreat marks the deacons’ second visit to the College, as the group hosted its 2018 retreat on the California campus as well. “We were glad to welcome the deacons to our campus, and we hope their faith was reinvigorated during their time here,” says Anne Forsyth, the College’s director of college relations. “It was heartening to see this group of joyful, faithful men who are so deeply committed to serving the people of our pastoral region.”

God willing, the group will return again next year. “It is always a privilege to be at Thomas Aquinas College for our annual retreat for deacons,” says Deacon Chis Sandner, the regional assistant to Bishop Barron. “On behalf of Bishop Barron and all men who attended, we can’t thank President McLean, Mrs. Forsyth and the entire staff enough for their generosity and hospitality. … The guys are already asking if we have dates for 2020!”