Manresa Retreat House
Each year over sixty-two hundred men from all across Louisiana and beyond make an annual pilgrimage to Manrea House of Retreats in Convent, Louisiana. The three day non-denominational retreats hosted by Jesuit priests are based on the Saint Ignatius spiritual exercises. Manresa is a place where men come to mediate and be rejuvenated spiritually.
“Anyone who has sat in quite reflection under these trees knows their beauty, strength and history.” – Michael Dale (Anne Dale Jewelers)
Men of Manresa rooted in prayer, symbolically represented in the old oak tree – its strength, protection and wisdom. While nearby the passage-of-time flows much like the uninterrupted power of the Mississippi River.
Yet both MAN and TIME stop or at least pause in this holy place in silence – the beauty of it all.
Saint Joseph alley is a spacious pathway of majestic oaks leading from Manresa to the mighty Mississippi River, these trees were planted during construction of the main house in the 1830’s. Today, many of them measure nearly twenty-two feet in circumference and are among some of the oldest oak trees in Louisiana. Sadly one of the nearly two-hundred-year-old oak trees had fallen during a 2015 spring storm.
Making of the Manresa Cross
Grounds keeper Adrien Delbasty gathered up the wood for jeweler Michael Dale (whose family has been attending Manresa since the 1930s) to begin the process of crafting these crosses.