How to Be a Spiritual Hero

A quick post from Immaculate Conception Seminary in Newark, New Jersey, where I have come to lead one of my Spiritual Hero retreats.

In these retreats I show how the hero’s quest in great stories provides a map for the spiritual journey. I mostly draw on The Lord of the Rings and illustrate my points with clips from Peter Jackson’s film, but with various audiences I use a whole range of other films too–The Matrix, Jerry Maquire, The Color Purple, Gandhi, Erin Brockovich…

Retreatants study the ten stage map of the hero’s quest and use it to discern their own next step forward. The film clips help them to visualize and connect with the emotions of the spiritual journey. They also use the map to understand the spiritual journeys of the saints and Biblical heroes of faith.

Young people enjoy these retreats, but people from all ages have enjoyed them. Many people appreciate it because it is orthdox, but it is also totally fresh. It’s fun, it’s creative and it’s immensely powerful.

  • Mark

    This sounds like a really good topic, Father. I wish I could be there.Do you have any notes/written materials you want to share here once you get back?I would agree our Heroes from contemporary stories are very influential in our lives.

  • Nancy C. Brown

    Wonderful, I wish I could be there, too. I, too, would love to see notes of this.Any chance you also use the Harry Potter stories in your talk?

  • MM

    would u mind sharing some of the talks here?

  • Matt Langdon

    I run a similar program called the Hero Workshop. I totally agree (naturally) that the hero’s journey is a great tool for getting people to realize they are the hero of their own story. You can click on my name to see my blog.