Latest News – Music Retreats


These retreats are explorations of the inner life of music, its spiritual and emotional forces, by a praying poet. While they are neither singing weekends nor do they involve in depth technical analysis, they welcome performers and non-performers alike into an experience of the works that aims to greatly enrich their imaginative response to the music and words – music as a constantly unfolding creative gift in each life.

2017 sees music retreats at:

Douai Abbey Lent retreat (March 10th-12th), entitled “You, God?” on Bruckner’s exhilarating and searching Te Deum. Lent calls us into a form of desert life, to a place of deep attention to Jesus, to a place where we examine, deepen and renew our relationship with God.  During this weekend, through a mixture of talks, readings and listening and thus going deeply into the inner life of what we hear, we will pray as fellow pilgrims with Anton Bruckner’s glorious concert setting of the Te Deum, reflect on Benedictine spirituality, and listen anew to the words of Jesus in scripture.  Participants said: “..a knowledgeable and passionate leader….I was amazed at the depth of knowledge and the obvious love of the retreat leader for his subject…he is both humble and humourous, a good combination…it really was superb…”

Ammerdown Centre  (May 26th-28th): On Mendelssohn’s great spiritual journey in his Symphony 2, Hymn of Praise  – and  Sibelius 5, the unforgettable swan finale. Participants said: “Euan is..humble, humourous, kind, sincere – consumed by his love of music and our Creator!” “Excellent – presentation, resources, content challenging, confirming…” “Encourages participants to ‘look at’ the music in a different way, to explore emotions and spiritual nature behind it…” “Enthusiasm and knowledge of subject…flexibility…”


Euan has just been booked to run the Advent retreat at Minsteracres Retreat Centre in Co Durham. The music will be Handel’s Messiah (Part 1).

2018 dates so far:
Douai Abbey: Easter Retreat (29th March -1st April) Handel Messiah – mainly concentrating on Parts 2 and 3.
Easter Retreat 2018: Waiting and welcome

To walk with Jesus through love, sharing his way to the Cross; to wait for Jesus on the Easter Saturday, listening to the Holy Spirit stir in our hearts; to welcome the resurrected Christ on Easter Sunday with a “living, rushing water” joy. The new gift of each year’s Triduum is the freshness of its grace, in how we open our beings anew to the life of Christ. This year Douai offers a new way to experience this holy time: a pilgrimage through great music, Handel’s Messiah, prefaced by reflective talks to help us live this pilgrimage fully. The time will as ever be infused by the liturgies of the community in the great Abbey Church.

Ammerdown, 30th November – 2nd December 2018. *NOTE: REVISED DATE*
“Unto us a child is born”
Praying with Handel’s Messiah for Advent.

Euan returns to Ammerdown in 2018 to explore the joyful transformation of heart and spirit that the Messiah’s Part 1 Christmas music represents – as part of our Advent time of praying and preparation for Christmas. While the opening Symphony is both solemn prayer and a release of joyful energy that foreshadows the Christmas music, the opening numbers shows God reaching out to us afresh when we still long for redemption – touching those aspects of ourselves that are still struggling. The Christmas music sings of our new spiritual freedom, God calling to us always to rediscover His love and salvation as a new gift, almost as if received for the first time this year.

All retreats start on Friday evening and end with Sunday lunch.

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