The ESM puts primary emphasis on the Sacraments and on the development of personal and community prayer. The students have daily mass, adoration, praise, a time for personal prayer and night prayer and the opportunity for confession. This allows for a discovery of the vitality and beauty of the liturgy and of the power of the sacraments and for a profound exploration of the student’s personal relationship with God.

There is a Chaplain who is constantly at hand for the spiritual needs of every student and each one is given a ‘companion’, who is a member of the Emmanuel community. The companion is there to act as ‘confident’ to the student and to offer them support throughout the year, encouraging personal growth and trust. There is also a weekly Lectio Divina which allows for a more thorough understanding of the Catholic Faith anchored in the Word of God.

The need for times of silence and introspection is essential for spiritual growth. Consequently there are different retreats and pilgrimages throughout the year, at which times the students really learn to be attentive to the presence and dynamism of the Holy Spirit and to the will of God. In such spiritual journeys the students also learn to accept themselves in their weaknesses and to experience the true Mercy of the Lord.


The usual yearly retreats include:

  • Orientation retreat - Assisi (Italy)
  • Outpouring of the Holy Spirit retreat - Rome (Italy)
  • Gift of Self Retreat - Rome (Italy)
  • Easter Triduum retreat - Rome (Italy)
  • Vocations retreat – Rome (Italy) and Namur (Belgium)
  • Silent Lectio Divina retreats - Rome (Italy)
  • Women and Men’s day retreats - Rome (Italy)
  • Desert Days - Silent retreats (7 days) - Rome (Italy)