“What are the desires of your heart?” This was the question Father Stephen asked 100 young men at the Montfort Retreat Camp in his sermon at a Sung Traditional Votive Mass of the Sacred Heart.
You can be sure that there is no lack of desire in a young man’s heart these days for what he is hoping to gain in the future. There are so many things advertised and available—so many things to set your heart on: Riches, expensive cars, mansions, yachts, stylish clothes, gold watches, resort vacations, and on and on.
“What is one to do with the desires of the heart?” Father asked again. “Crucify them, yes, Crucify them.”
These are the challenges young men face at Montfort Retreat. Each week is filled with challenges, both physical and spiritual.
After a strenuous day of sports activities in water and on land, most desire more sleep in the morning. The discipline of Montfort, however, dictates 7:00 rising, morning prayers at 7:15, and Mass at 7:30. There’s cabin and bunk inspection twice a day, a spiritual conference and catechetical instruction, Rosary, and Benediction. A young man will learn to safely use a rifle, improve his skill at archery, and practice sportsmanship in soccer, basketball, and other activities. Surrounded by woods and wilderness, he learns to enjoy and appreciate the beauty and peacefulness of God’s creation. Electronics—man’s invention—are contraband at Montfort.
Catering to one’s desires and longing for the things of this world do not bring happiness as is clearly evidenced in reality. Daily news testifies that family, society, and governments are falling apart as man becomes more and more self-centered. The key to peace, the key to happiness, and the key to the holiness that we are all called to lies not in following the desires of our heart but in following the desires of God’s Heart, the Sacred Heart. He knows what is best for us in this life and the life hereafter.
“Boys will be boys,” is a cliché often used to make excuses for lack of maturity. At Montfort, we work for the future when “Boys will be men.”
This year the Brothers MICM directed three weeks of Montfort Camps & Retreat for youth from across the country. Each week found 100 campers calling Montfort home. No sooner was the last week packed up, than four Brothers were airborne for Idaho where they finished off the summer season for a full camp in the North West! God bless all who have helped make the Montfort Experience possible for so many young Catholic Men!
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