Services and activities

 

Services and activities

As mentioned above, the doors of the Bethel Center are open again for sessions of prayer, retreat, discernment, and silent contemplation.

The logistics have remained the same, and it is still possible to go there for a lone pilgrimage or in a small group.

If you’re organizing a one-day reunion, we have a large room you can use, with the possibility of arrangements for meals and snacks.

For longer stays such as, e.g. retreats, there are eight available rooms with possibilities for meals; arrangements for special needs during your stay can also be made.

Every Monday at 4 PM, you can join the community and the regulars of the house for a Eucharistic celebration presided by the Marist Fathers of Buckingham.

Thursdays, from 3:00 to 4:00 PM, an adoration, where all the intentions of the diocese and the families are brought forward.

The team has occupations in the neighbouring English- and French-language parishes, but you will always find someone at the house for personal exchanges, prayers in the chapel, or simply support.

(N.B.: Another person in our religious family, Sister Françoise Daignault, Canadian but with international experience in our contemplative groups, will join the team next November.  She’ll be a precious gift, if ever we need someone to hold personal spiritual accompaniment sessions.

Welcome to Bethel, where you already feel at home!

 


 


A day of Recollection 
A day of recollection was held at Bethel on the 7th September, 2016 from 9.00am to 19.00 pm for the French speaking people. The theme -“The mercy of God” was chosen  in order to mark the year of mercy. It was animated by Sr. Violette Bouffard, SFB. The people were deeply touched and moved by the practical sharing of Sr. Violette about the unconditional tender love of the Father based on the Gospels specially St. Luke.

 

 

An answered prayer

A group of lay people, both men and women, were looking for a quiet and isolated spot where they could go at any time of the day to pray and meditate, churches being no longer available for this kind of practice.

In the interim, the rectory for the Notre-Dame-des-Neiges parish became available, and thus accessible to this pious activity through the intervention of Bishop Adolphe Proulx, then bishop of the diocese.  The wishes of this lay group could thus be realized.  A house of prayer opened its doors on August 18th, 1975.  Since then, Bethel has kept a close link with the diocese.

The law at the service of religion

The provisional administrative council was going to give a legal status and an official name to this house of prayer.  Indeed, the council asked that the Quebec Government confer it the status of a not-for-profit organization, which was done by letters patent on July 28th, 1976, under the official name of the Bethel Prayer Center.

This work quickly grew

In 1978, an annex was added on the west side of the house.  This annex added to it seven bedrooms and a large conference room, thus meeting its growing needs.

The vocation of Bethel

The main vocation of Bethel was to be a place of quiet and prayer.  Since then, its vocation has increased.  Prayer and silence are still a part of it, but other spiritual activities are also being held there.  They are largely drawn from the source of living water that is the Gospel of Jesus-Christ.  Thus, Bethel now perceives itself as a center of Christian renewal, and where the spiritual needs of the Christians of our region can better be answered.

Those who kept the flame burning

For all these years, women of faith have kept the flame burning at the Bethel Prayer Center.  Starting in 1976, a first permanent resident took office: Mrs. Lise Archambault, who was joined on December 8th of the same year by Mrs. Gisèle Branchaud, who would then continue alone until 1985.  In the month of August of that year, a new group of people came to replace her, i.e. the Franciscan Sisters of M.I.C., staying until 1993.  And starting in August 1993, it is the Ottawa Sisters of Charity who have taken over the running of the house. And so, in a nutshell, that is the sacred history of the Bethel Prayer Center.

 

Donations

The Bethel Center sees itself as a Diocesan service, and thus receives no subsidies whatsoever.  It lives on donations, coming mostly from people who use its services.  It’s thanks to these donations that the Bethel Center has been able to continue its mission since 1975.