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Dr. Diana Hayes to Lead Martin Luther King Jr. Day Of Reflection At Ignatius House Retreat Center

12/6/2012 - 11:30 AM PST

Catholic PRWire

ATLANTA, GA (December 6, 2012) - All persons of faith are familiar with the concept of "giving" of oneself in response to God's grace. However, there are many in the world that struggle to practice this concept in their daily lives. Martin Luther King Jr. was an exception to this, and his life and death serve as a valuable reminder of the grace and sometimes the cost of truly giving of ourselves. A gift from God to the people of the US, and the world, King sought to teach us that God created all of humanity, and all of its diversity, with equal love. His gift was to show us a way to be in solidarity with him and through him, with God and with each other to make the world the beloved community that John spoke of in his Gospel.

On January 21, 2013, Theologian and Spiritual Director, Diana Hayes, Phd. will lead a special Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Reflection at Ignatius House Retreat Center in Atlanta, Georgia. The theme of the day will be "Gift of God, Gift to the World: Giving of Ourselves." The focus will be on honoring one of our country's great spiritual leaders by remembering what he stood for and how his relationship with God grounded him and gave him the courage he needed to be a peaceful leader for the civil rights movement in our country. Dr. Hayes, who is the first African American woman to earn a Pontifical Doctorate, and who has received the US Catholic Award for Furthering the Role of Women in the Church, will also share her own personal story to illustrate how a person can be called out of the ordinariness of his or her life to a life not just "in" the world, but "for" the

"On this special day where we honor such a great spiritual leader as Martin Luther King Jr. having Dr. Hayes lead a Day of Reflection to reflect on his life and relationship with God is such a blessing," say Maria Cressler, Executive Director of Ignatius House. "As a black Catholic theologian she brings with her not only her theological background and expertise in the field of Catholic Theology and spirituality but her own life experiences that illustrate the importance of giving of ourselves."

Dr. Hayes, currently Emerita Professor of Systematic Theology at Georgetown University holds the Juris Doctor from George Washington National Law Center, the STB and STL degrees from the Catholic University of America, and a PhD in Religious Studies from the Catholic University
of Louvain in Belgium. She has received numerous awards including the Elizabeth Seton Medal for Outstanding Woman Theologian and the US Catholic Award for Furthering the Role of Women in the Church, as well as three honorary doctorates. She has lectured throughout the United States, Europe and in South Africa on issues of race, class, gender and religion, womanist and Black theologies. And, is also the author/editor of 7 books: Trouble Don't Last Always: Soul Prayers; And Still We Rise: An Introduction to Black Liberation Theology; Hagars Daughters: Womanist Ways of Being in the World; Taking Down Our Harps: Black Catholics in the United States (co-edited by Cyprian Davis) Were You There: Stations of the Cross; Many Faces of the Church (co-edited with Peter Phan) and her most recent book "Standing in the Shoes My Mother Made: A Womanist Theology.

The Day of Reflection to be held at Ignatius House Retreat Center in Atlanta will begin at 9 am and end at 3 pm. It will include a presentation by Dr. Hayes along with time for quiet, reflection and prayer. Mass will be celebrated and a light breakfast and lunch are included. The recommended donation is $35.00. Space is limited so those interested in attending should register quickly to reserve a space. Registration can be made online at or by calling 404.255.0503.

About Ignatius House Retreat Center: Opened in 1960 by the Jesuit Fathers and Brothers of the New Orleans Province of the Society of Jesus, Ignatius House Jesuit Retreat Center was created to provide retreat and spiritual renewal for those seeking to discover and live out God's will in their lives. Open year long, the facility occupies 20 heavily wooded acres overlooking the Chattahoochee River in Sandy Springs, GA a suburb of Atlanta. Ignatius House offers silent weekend/week day retreats, Days of Reflection, spiritual direction, spiritual enrichment programs and serve as the Atlanta campus for Spring Hill College. All retreats are based on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, a compilation of meditations, prayers, and contemplative practices developed by St. Ignatius of Loyola. The Exercises help people to consider creation, sin, repentance, and redemption while providing them with an opportunity for discernment and surrender to God's great plan of salvation through Jesus Christ. For more information about the center, schedules, accommodation, fees, etc. call 404.255.0503 or visit


Ignatius House Retreat Center  GA, 30328 US
Susan Burnash - ,  678-925-3582


Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2013, Day of Reflection, Atlanta, GA, Ignatius House Retreat Center


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