Spiritual Life Center making changes to feed body and soul
Fr. Ken Van Haverbeke would like to shorten the lines at the Spiritual Life Center – not the confession lines – the lines that form when chef Paul Fowler rings the dinner bell.
Father Van Haverbeke, director of the diocesan retreat center in Wichita, said the problem is not the number of seats available in the dining room, it’s getting the patrons into their seats as quickly as possible.
“Right now, when we have groups of, oh, over 60 people, they line up from the dining room all the way to the chapel,” he said. “We are hoping to eliminate that.”
That process of elimination began Dec. 1, and for the last couple of weeks, most of the noise on the northwest side of the center hasn’t been from Fowler and his crew banging pots and pans, the din has been from crews taking down walls and tearing up floors for the reconfiguration of the overall dining area, which will engulf the private dining area that was located just east of the main dining room.
“Right now we are at a single serving line. We’re going to have two buffet lines when the project is complete,” Father Van Haverbeke said. “And the other thing…is that we will have a beverage island that will be away from the food lines so that diners can get their beverages without being in line for food.”
The project is scheduled to be finished around the end of January. In the interim, food is being prepared as usual, but a conference room is being used to serve the guests, who then take their trays to their meeting room to eat.
Father Van Haverbeke added that the courtyard that was a part of the former Redemptorist wing will be opened up for use by patrons. The Redemptorist wing is now being used for private retreats.
In the early years of the Spiritual Life Center, priests and brothers of the Redemptorist order helped run the diocesan center.
Entrances are being constructed to allow access to the courtyard and then the dining room from the parking lot. The new entrances will allow patrons of the center to have outdoor socials in the courtyard.
When complete, Fr. Van Haverbeke said, the new dining area will help the center with its mission: “To build up the people of God in the Diocese of Wichita by providing spiritual retreats, parish lay leadership, and adult education in an atmosphere of holiness and joy.”
Want to help with the construction?
The cost of the improvements to the Spiritual Life Center will be between $300,000 and $350,000. Father Fr. Ken Van Haverbeke said he would be happy to meet with anyone who believes they are called to support the center with a gift.
To contact Father Van Haverbeke, call (316) 744-0167 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spiritual Life Center 2013 numbers
8,167 people attended one of 351 day programs
3,963 people attended one of 87 multi-day programs
288 made private retreats
480 attended one of 20 weekend retreats
25,086 meals were served
He Heals retreat Jan. 16-17 at the Spiritual Life Center
By Fr. Ken Van Haverbeke
She may not have realized it at the time, but when Peg Tichacek was diagnosed with cancer, she was given a gift. With the trial of cancer came the gift of the Holy Spirit’s prompting– a prompting to turn to her faith for strength and to Via Christi and her church family for support. This prompting led her to share Jesus’ ministry of healing with others by founding “He Heals,” a ministry focused on healing the hurts of body, soul, and spirit through the sacraments, prayer, and stewardship.
Peg and her team will be presenting a He Heals Mission Retreat at the Spiritual Life Center beginning Friday, Jan. 16, at 7 p.m. and concluding with Mass at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 17.
The mission of He Heals is based on Peg’s healing journey after her cancer diagnosis. Clinicians diagnosed and treated her cancer. The sacraments treated her soul and spirit. Family, friends, co-workers and church members prayed and walked with her on the journey. It is this walking with one another as Christ walks with us that proclaims the call to discipleship through a stewardship way of life. As Peg says, “In our prayer and stewardship, we share with one another our passion and our pain.”
The He Heals Retreat provides ways to share our passion and our pain through recognizing four key roles.
The sick person receives God’s gifts gratefully by accepting his illness and limitations and the grace that accompanies uniting his suffering to Christ’s. Frank Baca, a parishioner at St. Michael’s in Mulvane, can tell you about grace through suffering. Frank admits that, before being involved in a major car accident many years ago, he was “a pretty hardened man.”
As he healed physically, he sensed a spiritual healing as well. By seeing the accident as a blessing, Frank’s heart was open to the grace of the He Heals Adoration healing service held recently at St. Michael’s Church in Mulvane. As Frank says, “I had to be broken in many pieces, and God put me back together the way He wanted me.”
The clinician cultivates his gifts responsibly by giving his talents back to God through serving others. Whether it’s performing surgery, administering medications, or providing counsel, the clinician is called to seek excellence in his healing role. David Hufford, who has been a practicing physician for the last 30 years, was also present at the Adoration healing service in Mulvane. He understands that seeking excellence in his healing role means more than just making accurate physical diagnoses.
“There’s a spiritual part to [treating illness], and medicine alone can’t address that.” Hufford also realizes that “the healer sometimes needs healing, too.” He regularly prays for wisdom as he makes medical decisions and seeks the right words for delivering diagnoses.
“To console and to be consoled” is the message he strives to keep on his heart as he fulfills his healing role.
The caregiver, or Advocate returns his gifts with increase to the Lord by sharing his own story of suffering or helping the sick person to connect with someone else who has had a similar experience. “We have a responsibility to care for each other.” This is the message of stewardship that George Dinkel brought to the Mulvane healing service. George has worked at the Center of Hope, a homeless prevention program, for the past 11 years. He has witnessed caregivers who not only give their gifts back to the Lord by serving others, but who also draw the good out of those they serve. “It is really a great grace for our souls to be humbled and to admit we need help and to seek it.” He summarizes our call to gift others with our stewardship with a simple question: “What gifts will we bring when we join Jesus in heaven?” Hopefully, we will all have something to offer, whether is it our good works, our time spent helping others in need, the sufferings we have patiently and silently endured, or our prayers and our sacrifices.
The clergy share their gifts lovingly by praying and pastoring their suffering parishioners, and by administering the healing sacraments. Every person who attended the He Heals Adoration healing service in Mulvane was especially moved by the opportunity to touch the humeral veil, the vestment that is used to cover the priest’s hands as he holds the monstrance containing the Blessed Sacrament. Much like the woman in Matthew 9:21 who said, “If only I can touch his cloak, I shall be cured,” nearly everyone present at the healing service was prompted to touch the veil of Our Lord. This gift of the Eucharist and other healing sacraments, like Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick, is something only the clergy can give. Father John Lanzrath presided over the healing service in Mulvane, and tended lovingly to his flock through his prayers and administration of the sacraments.
Body, soul, and spirit: all parts that need healing to create a thriving whole. So, too, with our Church. When we care for each member as Christ would, our joy is lifted and our faith is strengthened. It is this truth that inspired Peg Tichacek to found the He Heals ministry, and it is the people of the ministry, like Frank, David, George, and Father Lanzrath, who confirm her belief that, “You’re not alone. That’s what this Church is here for. That we do it together.”
Father Van Haverbeke is director of the Spiritual Life Center, Wichita.
Financial freedom series begins Jan. 12 at the Spiritual Life Center
By Randy Walker
Faith, hope, and love are the three theological virtues that help guide our decisions and actions regarding our relationship with God and with our neighbors. But can we apply these virtues to guide our decisions and actions regarding our use of money?
We may apply faith by believing we can provide for our needs of food, clothing, and shelter. We may apply hope by thinking, “If I could get that job, all of our money worries will go away,” or “If we can make it until we get our tax refund next year, then we could pay off our debt.” We might apply love by overspending on a house or car saying it is for the good of the family.
While these may be good intentions, I propose we should apply faith, hope, and love to a deeper level regarding our money – a level so deep that it impacts the core of our thinking about money. Once we explore this depth, our view of money will be significantly changed and our view of life can be positively impacted.
Faith can guide our viewpoint of money. Hope can guide our long-term thinking about money. Love can guide our purpose of money.
In Scripture, God teaches us how to use faith, hope, and love to guide our financial decisions. He knew money would be important to us, so he has provided us the teaching on how to use it wisely. Want to know how? Come to a group study called 7 Steps to Financial Freedom beginning in January at the Spiritual Life Center.
Everyone can benefit from this eight-week course: those who are doing OK financially, including planning for the future, but not sure they are on the right path, those who are surviving day-to-day, but want a more secure path for their lives, and those who have encountered some hardships and are struggling to know how to get out of the resulting debt.
The group study is totally confidential, and no one will ever ask you about your personal situation. What you will gain is learning that others have been in your situation and have changed their lives. Lives and marriages can again find purpose by removing the mastership of money.
Want to learn about financial freedom?
The 7 Steps to Financial Freedom series begins Monday, Jan. 12, from 6:45 to 8:15 p.m. Participants will meet each Monday for eight weeks with the last class on March 2. The cost is $35 per person or $55 per couple. The center hopes to provide childcare for those in need, but please call ahead to reserve space. To register, call the center at (316) 744-0167.
Love and Logic Parenting Series begins two-Saturday format in January
The highly acclaimed “Becoming a Love & Logic Parent” series will be offered at the Spiritual Life Center from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 3 and 10.
The Love and Logic Institute says the series teaches parents and educators that we should “lock in our empathy, love, and understanding” prior to telling kids what the consequences of their actions will be. Parents learn how to hold their kids accountable in this special way.
Annette Clutter and Marceline Arnold, educators from St. Anne’s Catholic School in Wichita, will lead the series. They are certified by the Cline-Fay Institute in Golden, Colo., to teach the course.
The cost to participate is $70 per couple or $40 for individuals and includes the “Love & Logic” workbook plus lunch each day.
To register, contact the Spiritual life Center in Wichita at (316) 744-0167, or by visit the website at www.slcwichita.org.
Honor Our Blessed Mother this New Year’s Eve at SLC
Join Fr. Ken Van Haverbeke at 7 p.m. on New Year’s Eve for an evening centered on Our Lady: Undoer of Knots.
The annual New Year’s Marian program includes conferences, prayer, Eucharistic Adoration, Mass and a procession to an indoor Shrine of Our Lady. The cost is $20. Overnight rooms are available.
Register for this program by visiting the Spiritual Life Center’s web page at www.slcwichita.org or by calling (316) 744-0167.
Start the New Year with spiritual enrichment
The SLC has something for everyone in Jan.
The Spiritual Life Center has a January packed with programs. The schedule includes weekend retreats, evening series, a date night, and workshops on many different topics and interests.
In mid-January, Via Christi Health brings the He Heals Retreat to the center. Participants will enjoy a Friday evening and Saturday focused on healing the hurts of body, soul, and spirit through the sacraments, prayer and stewardship.
Fr. Castle Jan. 30
On Jan. 30, nationally recognized author Fr. Nathan Castle leads a retreat called Walking in Wonder: The Ruby Slippers and the Gifts of the Spirit. The weekend retreat views the popular story of the Wizard of Oz through a Catholic lens. Fr. Castle will also lead a special evening presentation on Saturday evening of that weekend for anyone who cannot make the entire retreat.
Love and Logic
The center will host workshops in January on parenting, finances, and grief support. Becoming a Love and Logic Parent occurs on Jan. 3 and 10. A new eight-week series called Seven Steps to Financial Freedom will focus on the theological virtues as a way to handle finances. It begins Monday, Jan. 12 and occurs from 6:45-8:15 p.m. each Monday through March 2.
Grief Support starts Jan. 13
A new session of the St. John the Evangelist Grief Support Group also begins in January. It will meet on Tuesday evenings beginning Jan. 13.
For three Saturday mornings beginning Jan. 10, Assistant Program Director Dusty Gates will lead a series on St. Paul’s conversion entitled, Led by the Hand: Walking the Pauline Path of Conversion.
On Tuesday, Jan. 13, the center hosts a panel discussion on the recent Extraordinary Synod on the Family called Modern Family. Many diocesan speakers will come together to discuss current Church teaching on issues such as communion for the divorced, homosexuality, challenges to family-centered evangelization, and domestic economic issues. The program will go from 6:30 to 9 p.m.
Cana Night Jan. 16
There will also be a Cana Night for Married Couples on Friday, Jan. 16, and a new program called Dinner with the Doctors on Wednesday, Jan. 28. Dinner with the Doctors in January will feature St. Thomas Aquinas as our topic and include a conference and dinner.
With so many programs coming in the new year, the SLC staff invites all to come and be renewed. Please remember the center is also always open for private prayer and quiet time.
In need of healing?
The He Heals overnight retreat begins at 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 16, and will conclude on Saturday at 5 p.m. The retreat cost is $40 with donations accepted for overnight room rates. To register please visit www.slcwichita.org or call (316) 744-0167.
Want to register for a program?
Information about these programs and all Spiritual Life Center programs is available at the center’s website at www.SLCWichita.org or by calling (316) 744-0167. Financial aid based on need is available for all retreats and programs of the center and can be applied for on the website.
Wizard of Oz retreat Jan. 30 at the SLC
Father Nathan Castle, author of the book “And Toto, Too: The Wizard of Oz as a Spiritual Adventure,” will lead participants in a retreat called Walking in Wonder: The Ruby Slippers and the Gifts of the Spirit the weekend of Jan. 30.
Using his book and the movie “The Wizard of Oz,” Fr. Castle will help participants unravel how the characters, scenes and plot of the famous story can be seen through a lens of Catholicity.
The weekend retreat begins at 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 30, and concludes at 1 p.m. Sunday. Regular retreat pricing applies.
Those who cannot make the entire weekend retreat may attend a Saturday evening presentation, “An Evening in Oz with Fr. Castle,” which includes dinner, a conference, and discussion. The cost for the Saturday evening program only is $15.
To register for the retreat or the Saturday evening program, visit www.slcwichita.org or by call (316) 744-0167.