• $100.00 – Program Price (Virtual only)
  • $250.00 – Program for In-Person Attendance including Single Accommodations and Meals
  • $8.00 – Friday lunch, Nov. 11, 2022

Date & Time Details: Fri. Nov. 11. 2022 1:00 p.m. - Sun. Nov. 13 at 1:00 p.m.

Address: 2675 Benet Road, Saint Paul, MN, USA


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School of Discernment 2022

With Kathleen Cahalan, Sister Virginia Matter, OSB, Mary Martin and Tod Twist

November 11 - 13, 2022

The School of Discernment is an opportunity to discern the voice of the Holy Spirit under the guidance of skilled teachers and listeners and with the benefit of wisdom from the monastic tradition, now available online. The framework includes sessions on the practice of discernment, reflection questions for quiet time, and one-on-one meetings. No one will be obligated to share publicly about the particulars of their own stories, but each will have the opportunity to do so as they choose. Spiritual directors will be available to assist with the process of discernment and any questions and insights as they arise.

Tentative Schedule 

Friday 11-11-2022

1:00 p.m.-2:30pm Session 1: Discernment as a Way of Life

3:30-4:45pm  Session 2: The Anatomy of a Thought

Saturday 11-12-2022

10:00 -11:30am Session 3: Working with Scripture and Personal Experience

 2:00-3:15 pm  Session 4: Listening for the Voice of God: Sorting Thoughts

Sunday 11-13-2022

  8:00-9:30 am  Session 5: Sustaining the Practice: Making a Decision

9:30-10:30 am  Shared Reflection and Closing Blessing


Kathleen Cahalan
Kathleen A. Cahalan is Director of the Collegeville Institute Seminars and Professor of Theology at Saint John’s University School of Theology and Seminary in Collegeville, Minnesota. She is the author of several books, most recently, Opening the Field of Practical Theology, eds. Kathleen A. Cahalan and Gordon Mikoski (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2014) and Living Your Discipleship: Seven Ways to Express Your Deepest Calling with Laura Kelly Fanucci (Twenty-Third Publications, 2015), Call It What It Is (2016), Calling all Years Good, edited with Bonnie Miller-McLemore (2016), and Christian Practical Wisdom, with Dorothy C. Bass, Bonnie Miller-McLemore, James Nieman, and Christian Scharen (Wm B. Eerdmans, 2016).
Learn more about Kathleen Cahalan
Sister Virginia Matter, OSB
Virginia Matter, OSB is a member of St. Paul’s Monastery and came to the Center from the health care field. She worked in nursing and in pastoral ministry. Virginia has done significant preparation in the area of spirituality, Centering Prayer, Bio-Spiritual Focusing, retreats, and Spiritual Direction. She also has experience in pottery and Native American creative arts. CONTACT e | Available for: One-on-one spiritual direction Bio-spiritual focusing Pottery instruction Questions about Centering Prayer
Learn more about Sister Virginia Matter, OSB
Mary Martin
Mary Martin received her training as a spiritual director at the Franciscan Spirituality Center (La Crosse, WI). She is a retired hospital chaplain who holds graduate degrees in theology, counseling psychology, and library science and has been in direction herself for over thirty-five years. She and her husband live in south Minneapolis and enjoy traveling (often to Ireland), and being in the outdoors kayaking, biking, or walking their dog. Mary writes, I have often described my own experience of spiritual direction as being an “incredible luxury and a radical necessity.” It’s a luxury in the sense of having the time to place the fragments, bits and pieces of my life before my director and to gaze with her, in the presence of God’s holy Spirit, at the contours, patterns, connections (and disconnections!) that are present. I experience direction as a necessity in that it helps me to be faithful to God’s promptings and my deeply held desire for ongoing conversion. Hunger, longing, dreams, disappointments, joys, questions all surface as we continue to mine the richness of our relationship with the Holy, with others, and with self. My own encounter with spiritual direction began when I was 28 years-old and discerning…
Learn more about Mary Martin
Tod Twist
In addition to being on the Spiritual Direction team at the Benedictine Center, Tod Twist also serves as Co-Director. Tod trained as a Spiritual Director through the program at the Franciscan Spirituality Center in La Crosse, WI. Prior to that, he spent some time as a freelance writer as well as a workshop guy (with leatherworking and woodworking) while being a stay-at-home dad. He studied Hebrew and Semitics at UW–Madison, as well as biblical studies at Bethel Seminary in the Twin Cities. While he values formal study programs, Tod has found new joy in the experiences that he’s had at spirituality centers, and he’s excited about being a part of offering retreats and spiritually-oriented presentations to people. Tod writes: Some tumultuous events in my teen years set me on a path of trying to make sense of what had happened to me, and I eventually wound up trying to be a Bible teacher after having been redirected away from a couple of other paths of service. It had been a couple of decades worth of rough road getting to that sense of calling and meaning, and when it didn’t work out, I took it pretty hard. After things went differently…
Learn more about Tod Twist