What we do

Santa Casa, Queenscliff

Santa Casa provides a sacred place of refreshment and nurture for body, mind and spirit. Through its staff, retreats and programs it seeks to offer:

  • A homely space where all feel welcome, especially the most vulnerable;
  • A contemplative container for the deepening of spirit;
  • A deep reverence for all creation;
  • A place to hold tradition within evolving consciousness.

2018/19 Retreat Program

October 2018: Wednesday 10th – 18th

Directed Retreat:

Facilitators: Bernadette Miles & Marlene Marburg

The eight-day retreat is a privileged time when we can tune out the noise and distractions of our regular routines in order to more intentionally focus on our relationship with God. You will meet with your director daily for spiritual conversation.


Cost: $800 (GST not included)

November 2018: Fri 2nd – 9th

Treasuring our later years

Facilitators: Nicole Rotaru RSM

Treasuring our later years invites us to be awake to the new chances and possibilities offered daily. During our days together we will ponder themes that take on special significance in our later years: awakening to new possibilities in my life now; spirituality; what has given and gives my life meaning; relationships; gratitude; death – mystery. Our conversations will be a time of recognizing the richness of our journey to ‘now’, the wisdom we have gained, our capacity to adapt to the changes occurring in us and a deepening of our awareness of God’s presence

Cost: $600 (GST not included)

December 2018: Sat 1st – 8th

Advent’s invitation: In the company of our Angel Guide

Facilitators: Carole Carmody RSM and Margaret Moore RSM

This retreat is an invitation to rest, reflect and renew your spirit in the beautiful season of Advent. Some of the Angel guides of Scripture will offer wisdom and inspiration for the journey of this retreat. There will be a morning reflection and an evening prayer as the sun sets. There will also be opportunities for spiritual companioning.


Cost: $600 (GST not included)


December 2018: Tues 11th – 18th


Facilitators: Peter Varengo


Cost: $600 (GST not included)

May 2019: Wednesday 1st – 8th

Contemplative Retreat

Facilitators: Margie Abbott RSM & Elaine Smith RJS

This retreat will enable you to listen deeply to Earth and Each Other. Sharing We Space we will allow for the Collectiva Practice; earth centred meditations and mindfulness walking; listening to the birds and waves and be entwined in all that is.                                     

This retreat is fully booked

Cost: $600 (GST not included)

May 2019: Thursday 23rd –30th

Autumn’s Invitation

Facilitators: Carole Carmody RSM and Rev Hien Vu

Autumn 🍂 invites us to listen more deeply, let go more graciously, cross thresholds courageously, and to nurture the desires of our heart.
If you find yourself in such places in your life please join us for this contemplative retreat in an atmosphere of silence and peace.
Each day includes a morning reflection, night prayer and optional daily Eucharist as well as an opportunity for Spiritual direction.

Cost: $600 (GST not included)

June 2019: Tuesday 4th – Thursday 13th

Gems of Inner Truth

Facilitator: Liza Stewart

This retreat in the Ignatian tradition offers an opportunity to gain self- awareness.   Experiential exploration will reveal insight into the wonderful richness held in our inner world. Our quest to unwrap this inner wisdom is a challenging one, which at the same time can be difficult, inspiring, puzzling and exciting, as we will seek to answer the most revealing of all questions, ‘Who actually am I?’ There will be group discussion, silence, and the opportunity for individual spiritual direction.

Maximum Number: 8

Cost $800 (GST not included)

June 2019: Friday 14th – 21st

‘With the drawing of this Love and the voice of this Calling…’ [T.S.Elliot, Little Gidding]

Facilitators: Madeline Duckett RSM

The drawing power of Divine Love in us has a story in each of our lives as we slowly learn to recognize and trust in the ebb and flow, and to move to deeper places of Divine union. Like nature’s seasons, Love draws us through seasons of abundance and scarcity, birth and death, growth and diminishment, suffering and joy. This retreat will help us to re-member our experiences and explore the ‘Eucharistic’ nature of Omega Love’s continuing call to BE and to BECOME MORE. During the retreat there will be opportunity for spiritual direction for those who wish.

This retreat is fully booked

Cost: $600 (GST not included)

July 2019: Wednesday 31st – Aug 7th

At the time of the Rising Dawn

Facilitator: Kerrie Hide

‘In this spiritual sleep in the caress of the Beloved
We relish all the tranquillity, rest and quiet of the peaceful night
That is the tranquillity and quiet of divine light”
– John of the Cross, Spiritual canticle 15:22

Drawn by the touch of the beloved in the night of our lives, we will create a communion of love longing, as we follow the invitations of dawn light arising in us, awakening unitive awareness. John of the Cross, Elizabeth of the Trinity, Teilhard de Chardin, and Beatrice Bruteau will be our guides.

Cost: $600 (GST not included)

August 2019: Sunday 18th – 25th

‘Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies….’

Facilitator: Rev Chris Hope

In the retreat we will reflect on the episodes of the Passion Narrative in the Gospels, particularly from the perspective of the disciples, female and male who are with Jesus on the way to Calvary.

We will keep in mind the words of St Paul: I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I who live but it is Christ who lives in me.’

Cost: $600 (GST not included)


September 2019: Wednesday 4th – Saturday 7th

Centering Prayer

Facilitator: Helen Duffy

Centring Prayer is a receptive method of silent prayer that prepares us to receive the gift of Contemplative prayer, prayer in which we experience God’s presence in us.

Closer than breathing, closer than thinking, closer than consciousness itself, this method of prayer is both a relationship with God and a discipline to foster that relationship”. [Thomas Keating]

Cost: $300 (GST not included)

September 2019: Sunday 15th – 24th

Directed Retreat “Sounding  Solitude”

Facilitator: Madeline Duckett RSM

This is a fully directed 8 day retreat where retreatants are invited to begin from where they are and sense the still small voice within, calling them to where they might be. There will be the opportunity for spiritual direction each day at a chosen time as well as a daily contemplative time together for those who feel drawn to pray in communion with others.

Maximum of 6 Costs: $800 (GST not included)

This retreat is fully booked

October 2019: Tuesday 15th – 22nd

The Kingdom is Here. ‘You must know, the kingdom of God is among you’ – (Lk 17:21)


Facilitator: Rev Peter Varengo


‘An exploration of discipleship through the Gospel imagery of the Kingdom’

Jesus had hang-ups, none more persistent than his concept of Kingdom –

a reality understood as the life-giving and active presence of God in our world, embracing every dimension of faith, and expressed in the human experience of each day in the here and now.

Jesus’ Kingdom parables then become the blueprint of the personal and collective response of the believer who accepts the call to discipleship.

Cost $600 (GST not included)

November 2019: Friday 29th –Sunday Dec 1st

Advent Retreat

Facilitator Helen Duffy RSM

This Advent Retreat will allow us to ponder the contemplative heart of Mary and invite us to hear the Love-song of deep hope offered to all of creation in the mystery of the Incarnation. Centring Prayer will frame our days together.

Cost: $200 (GST not included)

December 2019: Tuesday 3rd -10th

Advent’s Longing

Facilitators: Carole Carmody RSM and Margaret Moore RSM

If you find yourself longing to nurture the desires of your heart, for quiet and peace, for walks along the shore with beautiful sunsets, this retreat may be an invitation to you .
Each day offers silence and contemplative spaces with a morning reflection, evening prayer, and optional Spiritual Direction.

Cost: $600 (GST not included)

Other information about our Centre:


For bookings and further information contact:

Sr Lizzie Finnerty rsm
Santa Casa
33-35 Flinders Street
Queenscliff VIC 3225
Phone: (03) 5258 2661
Mobile: 0418 194 261

Website: http://institute.mercy.org.au/santa-casa
Email: santacasa.enquiries@ismapng.org.au