By Sulz, Dave on October 26, 2019.
The Martha Retreat Centre has a new leadership and management team, and members of the public are invited to meet them at an open house early next month.
The centre on Scenic Drive South was built by the Sisters of St. Martha, who operated it for 50 years. The Sisters are still involved in the governance and direction of the centre although they have returned to Nova Scotia to offer their service elsewhere.
“When we knew we would be leaving Lethbridge, we formed a committee of local spiritual teachers and community leaders with a wide range of expertise to help plan how the Centre could continue into the future,” Sister Theresa Parker said in a news release. “This dedicated and enthusiastic group formed a society last year and is now fully installed to carry on the work.”
The new leadership team has been in place since Sept. 1.
“We believe the history and potential of the centre is a solid foundation for a bright future, carrying on the tradition of Gospel hospitality and open-hearted service the Sisters of St. Martha offered for half a century,” said board chair Cheryl Dick. “It is our intention to continue to offer programs and retreats for all interested people throughout Western Canada and specifically in southern Alberta.”
The society’s board of directors hired Mark Nixon, a recently retired teacher and former chaplain with Catholic Central High School, as the centre’s executive director.
Aware of the human need for spiritual growth and development, Martha Retreat Centre seeks to provide a quiet, welcoming space where people, individually or in groups, can come away and rest awhile, nourish their spirits and open their hearts to God’s call to them in the current reality of their life’s circumstances.
“Our intention is to respond to the needs of the people looking for a place to rest and renew in this busy world,” said Nixon. “We all need a place grounded in peace and solace and, while it will be different than when the Sisters lived here, we are sincerely striving to give those who come the experience of Gospel hospitality and care that they need.”
The board will host a Community Open House on Sunday, Nov. 3 from 2 to 4 p.m. and anyone interested in learning more about the centre and meeting the board and staff is welcome to attend.