Please contact if you have any questions.

“The days are a combination of input, solitude and shared reflection.”

Previous Participant

Reframing Retirement for Mission will be transitioned to an online program during June 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This virtual program will include morning presentations from our renowned speakers and optional online discussions with others in this stage of life transition. The topics include the spirituality of aging, life transitions, theological updating and the arts. Presentations will run live on Monday through Friday mornings from 9 – 11:15 am CST via Zoom. Most talks will be recorded and will be posted on our private program site for viewing as well. Please see the attached schedule for more details. We encourage all participants to build in time for personal reflection, spiritual direction and focus on your own wellbeing during this virtual experience that seeks to support real spiritual and ministerial growth.  

The personal fee for the online seminar is $250. Please contact if you are interested in group pricing. 

Reframing Retirement for Mission – 2021

We invite you to join us for a month-long mini-sabbatical in Chicago for men and women religious, diocesan priests, and now lay ecclesial ministers who are discerning and/or transitioning into retirement. This program, scheduled for summer 2021, will run from Friday, June 4th to Friday, July 2nd. Reframing Retirement for Mission will include three weeks of speakers, one to one spiritual direction, daily prayer and mass along with other recreational activities. One week will be reserved for a directed retreat.

This program assists the participants in making the transition from active ministry to retirement, with a special focus on recognizing and living their retirement years as a fruitful period of life with possibilities for personal growth as well as new opportunities for engaging in ministry.

Retirement need not mean withdrawal from meaningful work on behalf of Christ’s mission and ministry, but it does require a realistic, necessary and creative adjustment in how to continue to respond faithfully to the call to bring Christ to others and to our world.

This on-campus mini-sabbatical is limited to 30 participants. Registration for our on-campus mini-sabbatical in 2021 will open in August of this year.

Download the brochure.

Part of

Jim Schoeder
James Schoeder

Transitions and Grief

Fr. Jim Schoeder is a Priest of the Sacred Heart and clinical psychologist (Ph.D. Loyola U of Chicago, ’79), Father Schroeder ministered to religious and clergy through psychotherapy for 35 years, and at the St Louis U School of Medicine.  He served in leadership, travelled extensively, and, though now retired, I help with conferences, retreats, formation work, and care for our elderly.

Fr. Don Senior
Donald Senior, CP

Retiring or Repurposing, A Reflection

Fr. Donald Senior’s work has focused on the study and interpretation of the Gospels, the Pauline literature, 1 Peter, and New Testament archaeology.  Along with teaching, he has also been involved in the administration of theological education and with an exploration of the biblical lands in the Middle East.  He is a Passionist priest, belonging to a religious community that was one of the founding members of CTU.

Richard Fragomeni

Poetry and Aging and Liturgical Ministries

Rev. Richard Fragomeni is a presbyter of the Diocese of Albany, New York, and has been a member of the CTU faculty since 1990. His teaching involves him in Roman Catholic theology, interpretation theory, and poetry. His current work is in the field of word and sacrament: the intersection of symbolic activity and language as it creates insights into the Christian proclamation of grace. Central to this work is a fascination with the power of liturgy and preaching in the transformation of the human heart.


Robin Ryan, CP

God and the Mystery of Suffering

Robin Ryan is a Passionist priest and theologian who serves as Associate Professor of Systematic Theology and Director of the Master of Arts in Theology program. He earned Master of Divinity and Master of Arts degrees at Catholic Theological Union. He received his Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from The Catholic University of America. He is the author or editor of several books, including God and the Mystery of Human Suffering (Paulist, 2011).


Edward Foley, Capuchin

Sacramental Imagination 

Trained in musical performance and liturgics, Ed’s teaching at CTU prodded him to develop as a practical theologian.  In his understanding, practical theology is the contextual interface of experience, religious traditions and society for the transformation of church and world.  He belongs to the Capuchin Franciscan Order, canonically recognized as a “mixed” community of lay and ordained friars of equal dignity.  Ed believes this charism makes a distinctive contribution to a Church that is also “mixed” but sometimes struggles with the “equal dignity” part of that equation.  Besides exercising practical theology as an educator at CTU and concurrently as adjunct at the University of Chicago, he preaches and presides at Old St. Patrick’s Church in Chicago.


Tarianne DeYonkers
Tarianne DeYonker, OP

Creative Writing

Sr. Tarianne DeYonker, OP, is a Dominican Sister, a member of Global Sisters Report’s The Life Panel, and a certified Amherst Writers and Artists leader. She teaches creative writing classes and writes on the political activism of many Catholic Sisters.

Carol Johannes, OP
Carol Johannes, OP

A Spirituality of Aging

Sr. Carol Johannes, OP, has been involved in the ministry of spiritual direction and has conducted workshops, directed retreats, and led groups exploring issues of spirituality. She is a former Prioress of the Adrian Dominican Congregation.

Patricia Walter, OP

Sister Patricia Walter, OP, is has taught systematic theology at Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis, Missouri; the Angelicum in Rome; and St. Mary Seminary in Cleveland. She has also served as Prioress of the Adrian Dominican Congregation. Sister Pat has written and given presentations and retreats on religious life, Dominican spirituality, and the vows in Europe, the Philippines, and the United States.

Mickey McGrath, OSSF

Saints for the Silver Years 

Brother Mickey McGrath, an Oblate of St. Francis de Sales, lives and works in Camden, NJ.  He is an award-winning artist, author, and speaker whose work celebrates the connections between art, beauty, and religious faith. He is also a Guild Master at the Grunewald Guild, an interfaith art community in Leavenworth, WA, where he has taught for thirty-three years. No matter the subject or topic, Bro. Mickey’s work highlights themes of art for meditation; social justice and cultural diversity; and the healing power of beauty in all its forms.

Brother Mickey currently holds the title of visiting artist at De Sales University in Center Valley, PA.  In recent summers, he taught a one-week graduate spirituality class entitled Wise and Holy Women, at Boston College. It was focused on the four women Doctors of the Church: Hildegard of Bingen, Catherine of Siena, Teresa of Avila, and Therese of Lisieux.


Dianne Bergant, CSA
Dianne Bergant, CSA

Wisdom Reflections

Sr. Dianne, a Sister of St. Agnes of Fond du Lac, WI, served on the CTU faculty from 1978 to 2014.  She served as President of Catholic Biblical Association of America (2000-2001) and as the Rev. Robert J. Randall Distinguished Professor of Christian Culture, Providence College, Providence, RI  (2009-2010).  She was awarded honorary doctorates from the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University, CA (2013), Marian University, Fond du Lac, WI. (2014), and the Catholic University of Australia, Melbourne, Victoria (2015).

Fr. Anthony Gittins
Anthony Gittins, CSSP

Age and Wisdom/ Wine and Wineskins

Fr. Anthony Gittins, is a widely experienced missionary pastor and Professor of Theology and Culture at The Catholic Theological Union since 1984. He held the Bishop Ford Chair of Mission Theology from 1999–2008. Ordained in 1967, he earned MAs in Theoretical Linguistics and Social Anthropology and a PhD in Social Anthropology from the University of Edinburgh. He later pursued post-doctoral research at the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. He is the author of 14 books on theology, anthropology, mission, and spirituality.


Barbara Reid, OP,

Feminist Perspectives in Scripture

Sr. Barbara is a Dominican Sister of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and has served on the CTU faculty since 1988. She has served as Vice President and Academic Dean and has been actively involved in the Association of Theological Schools, including service on their Board of Directors. She has led many of CTU’s Israel Retreats and Biblical Lands Study and Travel Programs in Greece, Turkey, Israel and the Palestinian Territories, Jordan, and Egypt. A former Spanish teacher, she has given presentations in México, Bolivia, Perú, Uruguay, Brasil, Guatemala, and Santo Domingo. She has also lectured in Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, the Philippines, Thailand, and Rome.


Gilbert Ostdiek, OFM
Gilbert Ostdiek, OFM

Linking Liturgy and Life: Reflections on the Meaning of Eucharist

Gil, a founding CTU faculty member, is a past president of the North American Academy of Liturgy (NAAL). He has received a number of awards for his contribution to pastoral liturgy: the 1998 Michael Mathis Award from the Notre Dame Center for Pastoral liturgy, the 2007 Award from the Georgetown Center for Liturgy, the 2014 Berakah Award from NAAL, and two awards in 2016 from the Association of Catholic Publishers and the Catholic Press Association.  Colleagues also published a volume of essays in his honor: Finding Voice to Give God Praise: Essays in the Many Languages of the Liturgy.  Kathleen Hughes, ed. (Liturgical Press, 1998).


Welcome to Reframing Retirement for Mission!

Through this month-long virtual mini-sabbatical we will give you the tools to transition from full-time mission to active retirement.  The cost of the online seminar is $250.  

Please note, if you are paying by check, Please make checks payable to “Catholic Theological Union” and send them to the attention of Marian Diaz

Reframing Retirement for Mission Registration