Nantes, Pornic… 5 places of spiritual retreats to do in Loire

► Melleray Abbey (La Meilleraye-de-Bretagne)

After nine centuries of the presence of the Cistercian monks, it is the community of Chemin Neuf, resulting from the Charismatic Renewal, which, since 2015, has pursued the vocation of prayer in this place. The brothers and sisters, from fifteen countries, live according to the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and obedience.

On site, the activities are varied: the orchard, the visits and the gigantic park delight the residents. The abbey welcomes retreatants of all Christian denominations, individuals or groups (parishes, chaplaincies, etc.) in quiet rooms overlooking the park. Since 2016, the brothers of the community, helped by a beekeeper, have been working in the apiary. Their artisanal honey and fruit juices from the orchard are on sale at the abbey store.

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► Sainte-Claire Monastery (Nantes)

The thirty Poor Clares of Nantes lead a fraternal life in simplicity. Liturgical prayer punctuates monastic life while accompanying the highlights of the day: services sung in Gregorian, in French or simply recited can be followed by residents. Six rooms are dedicated to the reception of retreatants wishing to take a break. On site, it is possible to take part in printing, bookbinding and liturgical ornaments workshops.

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► Monval Reception Center (Pornic)

Nestled on the Jade coast in a wooded park of four hectares by the sea, the manor of Monval, a 19th century building, is a haven of peace conducive to contemplation. The site has an accommodation capacity of fifteen people. There is a three-bedroom cottage, a studio and a reception room that can accommodate 80 people, enough to accommodate family events. The estate’s chapel allows peaceful contemplation.

From September to June, Monval hosts diocesan activities and pastoral sessions. Privileged access to the Sentier des Douaniers, very close to the castle, leads to a small cove.

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► Convent of the Visitation Sainte-Marie (Nantes)

In this convent of the order founded by Saint Jeanne de Chantal and Saint François de Sales at the beginning of the 17th century, community prayer is intended to be simple, to facilitate the participation of guests who have come to recharge their batteries.

Closing retreats, reserved for the female public, can be carried out over one to eight days, excluding the Advent and Lent periods. They offer a space of solitude and silence, spiritual listening with a sister available for any interview. Meditation in the monastery grounds and reading in the library set the minds of the retreatants to relaxation.

Through their work, the sisters ensure the life of the community and help the poor. Their handicrafts, books of Salesian spirituality and the Heart of Jesus are offered for sale at the store.

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► Carmel Monastery (Nantes)

The Carmelites of Nantes, established in this city for four centuries, experienced many torments, especially during the Revolution. Today, they receive in three studios people wishing to spend a few days of silence. Those who so wish come to pray in the chapel, participate in the Eucharist and in the services of each day. They are invited to feasts, especially Carmelite or Teresian, throughout the year.

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Nantes, Pornic… 5 places of spiritual retreats to do in Loire-Atlantique