Editor’s note: On June 27-29, the CatholicMatch Institute is hosting a Catholic Retreat for Singles at the Malvern Retreat House. The weekend features speakers Bryan Mercier and Fr. Stephen Delacy, who will speak on coming closer to God and hearing God in your life. We spoke to Mercier about why retreats for Catholic singles are important, why Catholic singles need community, and why you should come to this retreat in Pennsylvania.
You have been asked to participate in the Catholic Retreat for Singles at the Malvern Retreat Center this coming June. Why do you think that it is important for single Catholics to participate in events such as these?
I think it’s important to meet up with like-minded people who share a common bond of faith. Sometimes we just go through life without stopping and smelling the roses; we let life pass us by and never stop to breathe it in. These sort of retreats help us to do that—to connect with God, to find ourselves more, to go deeper, to find peace and balance, and to learn to become the person God made us to be—the best version of ourselves. Additionally, it helps us to meet other Catholic singles. Sometimes being single can be lonely, and it’s nice to meet up with others in one place for a common purpose.
What are some of the topics that you are most looking forward to covering throughout the weekend?
I look forward to speaking on coming closer to God and finding a deeper connection with Him, how to hear His will, and how to let His love transform us to make us better lovers. I am also very excited to speak on the topics of dating, engagement, and marriage, and what it takes to find and keep a lasting true love.
If you had to pick something that you hope people take away from this retreat, what would it be?
I hope people take away dating and relationships tips that will help them to avoid bad relationships and cultivate good ones, while also learning tips that will help them to find the love they are looking for. I would also like them to walk away with a deeper love and connection with God.
How can single Catholics joyfully live their lives while waiting and discerning what God wants them to do?
It’s important to have a deep relationship with God, who is the only one who can give deep peace and joy in the midst of stress, loneliness, or fear. It’s also important to have good friends, to get out and spend time with them, and to have good hobbies that we enjoy. It’s also important to serve others, whether it’s the poor at a soup kitchen or those around us in need. This helps us to get out of ourselves while bettering ourselves and making us feel good.
What are some of the ways that you can encourage Catholic singles to develop community life and fellowship in their own area and dioceses?
You can start young adult/adult groups in your Church, your town, or your area. My wife and I have run a young adult group out of our house for seven years. Many Catholic couples have met and married through this group. We also have other Catholic events in the state. It’s also good to get involved at your parish, a Catholic organization, and anywhere else you can meet like-minded people. Community is very important; we need to participate in it and foster it in the ways we are able. If there is nothing, try to get something started with a few other people. Who know how much it can grow. Others will be thankful!
What would you say to the people who would like to attend the retreat in Pennsylvania, but just need a little encouragement?
DO IT! Don’t let fear, business, or anything else hold you back from what could potentially be one of the best weekends of your life. It’s only one weekend, but this weekend could be a very powerful and impactful one. There will be so many great things happening throughout the weekend. There will be a lot of time to meet and get to know other Catholic singles, to develop friendships or more. There will be fun activities, dynamic talks, a wine and cheese social, times for Q&A, time for prayer, and more. If you feel this might be the door that is opened for you, take a chance and walk through.
Join us for a Catholic Retreat for Singles on June 27-29 at the Malvern Retreat Center in Pennsylvania. Visit our events page for more information and to register online for the Catholic Retreat for Singles.