History of the Catholic Life Center

Recognizing that everything that is good is a gift from our loving God, Bishop Eugene J. Gerber in 1985 met with the faithful throughout the Diocese of Wichita. Bishop Gerber sought to listen attentively to the People of God and to discern what was needed to enhance the spiritual life of the faithful throughout the diocese. Through these discussions, Bishop Gerber heard three needs identified consistently: spiritual formation, adult education and leadership development.

As faithful stewards of God’s gifts, the people of the Diocese of Wichita began construction of the Catholic Life Center. Located in Wichita, Kansas, this 140-acre complex in 1990 became home to a 186 bed nursing home facility called the Catholic Care Center, twelve apartment units for retired priests called the Priest Retirement Center and a retreat and conference center known as the Spiritual Life Center. Throughout the years, the complex continues to grow. There are now twenty-four apartments for retired priests and in 2002, a sixty-bed Assisted Living Facility was completed along with a forty-bed Memory Care Unit for our sisters and brothers suffering from dementia and memory care challenges.  The latest addition to the campus is Shepherd's Crossing, an independent living community.  Immediately east of the Spiritual Life Center is the Ascension Cemetery. Truly, from life to death to Eternal Life, we are a pilgrim people on a journey to grow in holiness to our God.

The Spiritual Life Center serves as a retreat facility for those seeking to respond to the Word of God. The focal points of the Spiritual Life Center are our two chapels, The Chapel of Mary, the First Disciple and The Blessed Sacrament Chapel. Accommodations include: six conference rooms capable of hosting large and small groups; individual bedrooms with private baths to host as many as 114 overnight guests; a dining room facility with delicious meals prepared by our kitchen staff; and beautiful grounds for reflection walks and prayer, rest and renewal.

The Spiritual Life Center, as a retreat and conference center, welcomes many religious groups of other faith traditions as well as community non-profit organizations. The solitude and quiet that this place provides gives people opportunity for reflection. Jesus invited his disciples to come away and rest awhile.

The Lord walks with us in this pilgrim journey of faith. We invite you to walk with the Lord on this holy ground. Won’t you join us? We invite you to browse through our website, to read about our upcoming retreats, programs, workshops and classes.

We invite you to rest, to renew your heart, to restore your hope, to respond to the Word of God. You come as guest. May you leave as servant.

Mission And Purpose

The Spiritual Life Center is a retreat center and a place of pastoral formation. It exists to serve the People of God of the Catholic Diocese of Wichita.

Guided by the vision of the Bishop, the Center has been given the mission to develop programs for Adult Education, Spiritual Formation, and Lay Leadership.  It is also home for various diocesan programs.

The Center also offers the hospitality of its facility to other religious and non-profit organizations in the spirit of ecumenism and good stewardship.

Those who staff the Center work as a team, respecting the gifts of one another, collaborating with one another, and honoring all who come their way as they would Christ Himself.