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Collected from the Batch 1 participants of IFRS’ Accompaniment Program for Formators (APF), who were in HOGAR from February 24 to March 2, 2023 for a time of retreat as part of their culminating activity. These are some of their reflections about their experience at HOGAR.

“In HOGAR, I savored God’s presence not only during prayer times and the Eucharistic celebration but also during my encounter with the natural environment. How I love the early morning ‘ascent to the mountain’ where I could feel and breathe the cool breeze, enjoy the panoramic view of the other mountains and witness the bursting of the sunrise. In addition, food is abundant and superbly prepared! I feel so blessed to be here.”

“I experienced the presence of God in the silence, through nature. The beauty of the organic plants, trees and the fresh air and cool atmosphere.”

“HOGAR is a conducive place for prayer. It is a peaceful place where you can be with yourself, and with your God and with Mother Nature. The food is so healthy. Thus, the body is well taken care of, and is able to find rest.”


• Led me to experience contemplation as a way of gazing, immersing and deep gratitude of God’s wonders, beauty and goodness in Hogar

• To praise God through creation

• Genuine rest of the dimensions of self, body, mind and spirit.”

“My retreat here in HOGAR is a BEAUTIFUL encounter with God and with Nature.”

“My HOGAR experience made me contemplate on God’s majesty, deep awareness o the call of ‘Laudato Si’, healthy and friendly accommodation and invigorating.”

“Communion with nature has been facilitated very well through the place, the food and the topic reflected on. I was able to rediscover the joys of simple living. Waking up to the fresh mountain air makes me think of how I can keep my commitment to care for it.”

“A sacred place where I can go back to my inner self, to nature and to God. The food is a 100% very nutritious, organic and delicious.”

“I like very much the ambiance of the place, really suited as a place for retreats. The food is delicious and organic. It is good to come back here.”

“At HOGAR, every corner is a sacred prayer space. I was able to enter into silence. Here, you will see and connect with God through nature.”

“Healthy food is served every time. Beautiful flowers and landscape connect me to God. Peaceful and quiet place. Thank you very much, Fr. Sam, for your enriching input and reflection.”

“This is the right place to experience the sacredness of creation. My past experience is being re-enkindled, being one with the Sacred Presence / Divine Oneness with the Magnificence strength majestic presence of the mountains to bring this experience wherever I go. Thank you, Fr. Sammy and ICLA for sharing this sacred place.”

“I am in love with the place, the food, the weather. The ecological aspect is an invitation to prayer everywhere. My wish is to stay more days. God speaks in SILENCE.”

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