Personal & Communal Retreats

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Xavier House provides retreats for individuals and communities according to Ignatian tradition.

Personal retreats given can be from 2 days up to 30 days. Spiritual direction may be offered upon request and subject to availability.

We have certain requirements for those who apply for 8 days or more:

1) Eight Day Retreat: During the 8-day retreats, retreatants will have up to four contemplative prayers each day, approximately one hour for each prayer. Spiritual direction will be provided. Applicants should have 3 or 5-day individual guided retreat experience before. Applicants who do not have such experiences are recommended to come for shorter retreats first.
Spiritual Direction in English can be provided in the following eight day retreats in 2019:
15-23 April, 2019
14-22 June 2019
17-25 September 2019
5-13 November 2019
2-10 December 2019
Fee for food and lodging: $2,800 (This fee does not include fees for spiritual direction, offering would be appreciated. For reference, the unit cost of spiritual direction for eight day retreat is HK$1600, for details please refer to
Application: (Full)

2) Thirty Day Spiritual Exercise: Written by St. Ignatius of Loyola. Spiritual Exercises is a long retreat to meditate on the Life of Jesus Christ through prayers, meditations and contemplations, in order to prepare and dispose the soul to rid itself of all inordinate attachments, to seek and find the will of God in the disposition of our life for the salvation of our soul. [Sp. Ex. #1]
The Spiritual Exercises is different from ordinary individual directed retreat. On one hand, there are specific contents for prayer and contemplation; on the other hand, each exercitant's spiritual journey is unique. It will be very profitable for both the exercitant and the spiritual director to enter with openness and generosity to God, to explore and discover the grace in this interior journey. The exercitant shall have thorough understanding and personal experiences of Ignatian prayer and dynamics, therefore it is expected that the applicant shall have eight-day individual guided retreat in an Ignatian tradition within two years. The application process is a discernment process, where the applicant will be accompanied by a spiritual director to discern whether one is well disposed for the Spiritual Exercises.
Applicants please contact the Director or the Formation Officer of Xavier House directly to initiate the discernment process. Please allow at least six months for the process.

Groups are welcomed to come for communal silent retreats. Please note that total silence shall be observed in Xavier House. Subject to availability, applicant groups may request for a member of our team of spiritual directors to provide input and guidance during the retreat period.

Theme Retreat: Surrendering to the Beloved

Facilitator Fr. Peter McIsaac, SJ
Participant Participants who have joined prayer workshop or have experience of individual guided retreat for three days or above in Ignatian style
Content As we grow more mature in our relationships, we recognize that there are “seasons” in our hearts: times of growth and fruitfulness; as well as times of pruning and sacrifice. So too in the relationship of prayer and the spiritual journey – as well as in the process of discernment. In this retreat we will explore ways in which God leads us in the difficult seasons of our hearts and calls us to deep trust in His love. We will use the film “Of gods and men” to open our contemplation of God’s love and our trust.
Medium of instruction English, may choose English or Cantonese for spiritual direction
Date June 28, 2019 (Friday) to Jul 1, 2019 (Monday)
Time From dinner on first day till lunch (included) on last day

Xavier House, Cheung Chau
Fee $2,600 (Full)

Day Retreat: Encountering “The Other” 一天主題避靜:與他者相遇

Fr. Peter McIsaac, SJ
Anyone interested in the theme 對是次主題有興趣的人士
At the heart of our spiritual journey is the discovery of our longing to be united with “the One” whom we encounter as the mystery of Love. Love is the movement out of “self” to the “other” – and it defines who we are and what both our purpose and destiny is. The love of God and the love of neighbour – the path of Christian salvation – is a life-long journey that always involves seeing, desiring and choosing the “other” beyond the self. Our day of reflection will explore the freedom of love and its demands.
Medium of instruction
English, with Cantonese simultaneous interpretation
Jul 13, 2019
9:30am to 4:30pm
9/F Catholic Diocese Centre, Caine Road, Hong Kong



This course aims to introducethe practice of inner silence and contemplative prayer, which uses a mantricmeditation to empty one’s mind of negative thoughts and distractions.It teaches participants thatthe rigorous path of contemplation is vital for shaping good leaders. The course’s individual and collective experience is inspired by the stories of key leaders from the Bible, namely, King David and the Apostle Paul. Practicing contemplation encourages one to go beyond the surface of biblical texts to discover the richness of their meaning and relevance for one’s own life story.

The course includes four sessions, spread throughout the year: two sessions at Xavier House, Cheung Chau Island (Friday 8pm-Sunday 3pm) and two sessions in Magis Hall at Wah Yan College Kowloon, Hong Kong (Sunday 1pm-6pm). Participants are encouraged to begin or continue a regular practice of contemplation and to enrol in all four courses. Only participants who complete all four sessions will receive a Certificate of Attendance at the end of the fourth session. It is not possible to select to attend only one or two courses. Attendance presupposes a desire to cultivate a daily practice of contemplation. All course sections will be conducted in English.


Part One of the course willfocus on opening a space of inner silence and emptying one’s mind of negative thoughts. Based on key elements from the Spiritual Exercises of Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556), contemplation is facilitated with the use of biblical texts, images, symbols, and mantras. Contemplation rooted in the Christian tradition of the prayer of Jesus offers a privileged way to reconnect to one’s own spiritual tradition.

The first part of the course follows the contemplative journey of King David, with his ups and downs in life. The Psalms, which are attributed to King David,will serve not only as a key to participating in the stories of this Biblical leader, but also as means for reconnecting to the collective and individual search for the will of God. That said, contemplation also opens a gate to other wisdom traditions, such as Confucianism, Buddhism, Islam and Daoism, which alsohave methods that lead the soul to true silence. The method taught in this course focuses on becoming aware of one’sbreath and body, as well as on a mantra.

Contemplation can be practiced by everyone. The inputs by the instructor aim to encourage participants toward the rich impact of contemplation and tocommit to a daily practice. Contemplation may also be a decisive factor in preventing people going through the crisis of cancer oranother serious physical challenge from falling into the trap of despair and frustration. 

Key elements of a successful practice ofcontemplation:
a) Experience and keep inner silence;
b) Commitment to a daily practice of contemplation;
c) Support from a group of like-minded practitioners;
d) Learn from Spiritual Masters such as Teresa from Avila, Ignatius Loyola,Teresa of theChildJesus, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Alfred Delp
e) Learn from wisdom texts: poems,Bible, psalms;
f) Write a spiritual journal and practice self-management;
g) Practice Tibetan exercises;
h) Obtain an introduction to fasting;
i) Experience meditative dance.

The instructor: Dr. Stephan Rothlin S.J. isan Instructor of Contemplation and accomplished his formation under the guidance of Fr. Willigis Jaeger O.S.B. and Fr. Jean Dravet S.J.


Thiscourse focuses ona central theme in the Spiritual Exercises of Ignatius Loyola, namely, finding one’s own personal vocation and passion. The daily practice of contemplation frees one naturally from navel gazing and shapes the qualities of genuine moral leaders committed to the common good of society. The second part of the course links the contemplative journey to the pattern of the life of the Apostle Paul. His letters are a strong encouragement to persevere in the contemplative journey and to reach the level of trust Paul had in his companions and successors, such as Titus and Timotheus. The course also highlights how contemplation inspires the core principles of Christian Social Teaching, suchas solidarity, subsidiarity and a concern for the disadvantaged.

17-19 May 2019

Contemplation Makes Good Leaders:
Part One: Focus on King David and the 150 Psalms

29 June 2019 (Sat)
1pm – 6pm

Contemplation and Leadership Course – Half Day event at Magis Hall WYK

11-13 October 2019 (Fri-Sun)

Contemplation Makes Good Leaders:
Part Two: Focus on Paul, The Apostle and his Letter to the Philippians

16 November 2019 (Sat) 1 -6pm

Contemplation and Leadership Course – Half Day event at Magis Hall WYK 

The Instructor: Dr. Stephan Rothlin S.J. is licensed Instructor of Contemplation and accomplished his formation under the guidance of the German Zen Master Fr. Willigis Jaeger O.S.B.

Medium of Instruction: English

Course Fee: HK$3,800 (Full)




Address: 27 Peak Road, Cheung Chau, Hong Kong   Phone: (852) 2981 0342  Fax: (852) 2981 0749  Email: