Quo Vadis Retreat helps young men ‘take an active step’ in growing their faith

North Texas Catholic
(Jun 20, 2023) Local

silhouettes of two men at a lake

Seminarian Leo Kaiser (left) talks with a high schooler about what life is like in seminary, during an Emmaus Walk at Quo Vadis on Aug. 1, 2022. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

FORT WORTH — Quo Vadis is Latin for “Where are you going?” It’s also the name of an annual retreat for young men in high school who are interested in understandin­­g how to follow God’s lead by learning practical tips to grow in their faith.

The July 17 retreat is taking a broader scope this year.

Trent Barton speaks in front of a podium
Seminarian Trent Barton addresses retreat attendees. More than 60 high-school age boys attended the Quo Vadis Retreat at Montserrat Jesuit Retreat House on July 17, 2023. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

“In the past, the retreat has focused on young men interested in the priesthood,” said Father Brett Metzler, diocesan vocations director and retreat organizer. “The direction we’re taking it is the step right before discernment. We want young men who are open to the grace of the Holy Spirit moving in their lives.”

Participants will learn several keys to deepening their faith, such as reviewing how to pray well, recognizing the importance of sacrifice, suffering, and fortitude, and knowing how to grow in virtue and discipline.

“We want them to learn what it means to sacrifice, what it means to grow in virtue and live a disciplined life, to learn to have a routine, and [to know] why you should have a routine in your life,” Fr. Metzler said.

They’ll also learn about practicing such virtues as prudence, temperance, and justice.

men at prayer
High school youth and seminarians spend time in Adoration at Quo Vadis in this August 1, 2022 photo. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

After he was ordained in 2021, Fr. Metzler became the director of vocations. As he worked with the Quo Vadis retreat last year and talked with those involved, he realized that more young men could benefit from a day devoted to growing in their relationship to Christ. For those contemplating becoming a priest, there is another retreat later in the year.

He wanted to introduce the young men to routines that would help them establish a firm foundation for growth as a Catholic man.

“The retreat is focusing on tilling the soil, so guys can start developing in their faith,” Fr. Metzler said. “If they’re called to the priesthood, great, but this will benefit them no matter what their calling is.”

boys playing volleyball outside
Boys and seminarians attending the Quo Vadis Retreat play a game of volleyball at Montserrat Jesuit Retreat House on July 17, 2023. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

Those who attend will celebrate Mass, interact with priests and seminarians, and have the opportunity to join in fellowship in the afternoon through playing sports or board games.

The one-day retreat at the Montserrat Jesuit Retreat House at Lake Dallas is free and includes lunch.

Fr. Metzler said participants have much to gain and nothing to lose.

“I think any young man who wants to take his faith more seriously and who wants to take an active step in growing in their spiritual and moral life will benefit,” he said.

For more information, email or call 817-945-9321. A registration form can be found here.

Father Brett Metzler leads Benediction for more than 60 high-school age boys who attended the Quo Vadis Retreat at Montserrat Jesuit Retreat House on July 17, 2023. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

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