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FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH IN DOWNTOWN WILMINGTON NC
  • Writer's pictureJayne Davis

Reflections from the "Praying the Hours" Retreat

I never knew what peace really was until I went to St. John’s Abbey. The Benedictine Rules on Life are simple and achievable by anyone who believes. They welcome you, they feed you with their five principles of Prayer, Work, Study, Hospitality and Renewal. The renewal for me was that I found me again. I encourage everyone to attend this time of peace and tranquility at one of the most beautiful and Holy places I have ever had the privilege to visit, learn, study, and rest. It absolutely renews your faith and teaches you respect for other ways of worship. By the time Friday night services were completed we all had learned a different form of worship and which books to use and when to stand and when to sit. Their Bible is our Bible. Saturday Mass was different but still beautiful in every way.

In The Rule, Benedict shares these vows of stability, conversion, and obedience that are the commitments that they make for life. They have much to say whether you live in Wilmington, Leland or in a monastery or convent!


  • Stability - Stability refers to the importance of community and Commitment in life. To be a good steward of what God has given us.

  • Conversion - It means we must keep our ears open to God’s voice and eyes open to God’s presence amongst us. Always keeping our hearts and minds open to the ways God is moving us.

  • Obedience - Listen. Obedience is Latin for the word LISTEN. That’s a key to learning even from the youngest person in your community. Obedience provides a healthy, balanced view to an intentional life. A healthy sense of self knowledge and respecting and following the leaders, teachers and travelers who are guiding you on your journey to God.

God is good ya’ll EVERY DAY. Grab a piece of life because there are no guarantees of tomorrow.

Psalm 100 EVERY DAY!

Renee B. Edge

One of the highlights of going to St. John's Abbey was being allowed to play hymns and classical music on the Holtkamp-Pasi organ, truly a magnificent instrument. As a musician, I know that rests are just as important as notes and the retreat helped me realize this truth in other areas of my life. My body needs proper rest so that I can be a living instrument for God (Romans 12:1-2). The times of prayer spent at the Abbey taught me that worship should not be rushed but should include times of silence (rest) for me to listen and hear God's voice (music for my soul). Thanks for including me!

Jean Hatch

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