Retreat Spotlight – Fall 2019
Blessing of the Animals – The Story of St. Francis and the Wolf of Gubbio
St. Francis of Assisi was said to have tamed a wolf ravishing the small Italian village of Gubbio. The wolf was starving and had no choice but to attack the villagers and their animals as a source of food. St. Francis went to meet the wolf, even though the villagers warned against it. When the wolf saw St. Francis, it lunged to kill him but St. Francis, making the sign of the cross, bid the wolf to come to him. “Come here Brother Wolf. You must not hurt me or anyone else.”
It was said the wolf came and rested at St. Francis’ feet. St. Francis promised the wolf that if it did not attack the people anymore, the people would feed it every day of its life, which is what this legend said happened. St. Francis was not afraid to meet the dangerous wolf, but he recognized underneath that ferociousness was the basic instinct of survival – the wolf was starving. It was within the power of the villagers themselves to tame the wolf by providing for its basic needs.
What we see in this story is the wisdom of St. Francis that sees underneath the behaviour of the wolf to a deep need. We are called to do the same.
Providence Renewal Centre welcomes you to our ecumenical retreat and conference center. Established in 1983, it has evolved and changed over the years. Today, we open our doors to those of any faith or to those who are looking for a Christian environment in which to nourish their spiritual lives, as well as those who are looking for a peaceful environment to hold their meetings, seminars and conferences.
Whether you are booking our facility for a special function or conference, holding a staff meeting or in-service, or participating in our many excellent programs and retreats, you will find Providence Renewal Centre is a sacred space in an ever-changing world.
We offer a variety of rooms that can accommodate small groups of four to large groups of up to 275, single bedrooms and suites with bathrooms; a chapel, a library, and five small sitting rooms available in an atmosphere of Christian hospitality. Our facility is a perfect place to gather, to meet, to pray, to learn, and to grow.
Hospitality is one of our key values and people feel this value from the time they walk in the door until they leave. The coffee is always on and the staff are welcoming, competent and helpful.
We are waiting to welcome you!