By Sarah Calahan
In March, the Dublin Programme campus ministry team led students from Dublin and beyond to Glendalough for a Lenten day of reflection. Notre Dame students studying throughout Europe were invited to join the retreat, and we welcomed a group of thirty-five participants from Dublin, London, and even Copenhagen.
After a morning prayer service at a nearby parish, our time in Glendalough proper began with a hike around the site’s two lakes and into the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains. Students volunteered throughout the hike to pause and lead us in reflections on the beauty of our surroundings and the challenges and blessings of exploring such a rugged sacred space in a driving Irish rain. (Our hiking efforts were rewarded at the end of the hike with a grade-A Irish rainbow!)
Our own Kevin Whelan taught us about the spirituality of Glendalough’s famous settler St. Kevin in the monastic city in the afternoon, and before heading back to Dublin, split into pairs to reflect more intimately on the spiritual journey of study abroad.
We finished the day with Palm Sunday vigil mass at the House of Brigid’s parish, Our Lady of the Rosary in Harold’s Cross, and headed our separate ways with still-drying shoes but very full hearts.