Congregation of the Humility of Mary
The Congregation of the Humility of Mary, is a contemporary religious community of women based in Davenport, Iowa. Like the woman in the gospel who lights a lamp to search for lost treasure, we seek the will of the Spirit in the signs of the times. Motivated by compassion and justice, we give ourselves wholeheartedly wherever the needs are greatest. We invite you to learn more about our community: how we live, what we believe, our spirit and gifts – and what it means to search and serve in the 21st century.
In The Stillness We Hear Your Voice, O God Step Into Tranquility
Spend a day, a weekend, or even a week, reflecting, meditating and appreciating the beauty of God’s creation in a very special place deep in the Midwest countryside: Our Lady of the Prairie Retreat, near Wheatland, Iowa. Only 40 minutes from downtown Davenport yet far from the hectic pace of life, The Prairie offers people of all faiths an environment of quiet beauty conducive to:
- personal prayer and reflection
- inner growth and nurturing the soul
- group team building, creative thinking and decision making
Whether you come alone or with a group, you’ll find a welcoming environment designed to renew the human spirit:
- Paths wandering through woods
- The Cosmic Walk Universe Story
- Fields of flowing prairie grass
- Peaceful nature pond
- Ancient circles of the labyrinth
- Birdsong welcoming the morning
- Restful bliss in private rooms
- Phenomenal sunrise and sunset
For those with a focus on eco-friendly experiences The Prairie is sure to please:
- Surrounded by 200 acres of natural prairie grass and timber – no chemicals added
- Abundant native wildlife
- Fresh Iowa country air
- No bottled water – filtered H2O fresh from the well
- Delicious home-cooked meals – locally grown and organic whenever possible
- China and flatware meal service (forget the paper & plastic!)
- Solar energy
A Sacred Space
Our Lady of the Prairie Retreat is a ministry of the Congregation of the Humility of Mary and is located in rural east central Iowa on a 200-acre native grass prairie woodland along the Wapsipinicon River.
Catering To The Soul
Our Lady of the Prairie Retreat is the fulfillment of a dream for a place of spiritual renewal in the Iowa heartland by a prayerful monk, a forward-thinking pastoral team and a visionary religious community with a commitment to spiritual growth and care of the earth.
Mission Of The Prairie
We who carry on ministry at Our Lady of the Prairie Retreat provide hospitality and service in a sacred space of peace and beauty that promotes respect for all creation in the tradition of the Sisters of Humility. Individuals and groups of all faiths are invited to use our facilities and services.
Perhaps you would like a day to pray, write, read, hike, study nature, walk the labyrinth or simply relax in solitude. Individuals are welcome to spend a day or several days with comfortable and quiet overnight lodging available for reasonable cost.
Additionally, there are a variety of prairie sponsored programs offered throughout the year.
Groups And Organizations
Churches find The Prairie useful for staff meetings, clubs, guilds and Bible study groups. Other organizations use The Prairie for personnel orientation, renewal meetings and workshops. Up to 30 people can be accommodated for group events of one day.
Reserve a date and plan your own program or request a presenter from a provided list.
Our Lady of the Prairie has two main Victorian-themed buildings, air-conditioned and with private overnight accommodations for 15 persons. The spacious grounds provide room for a number of unique facilities to promote renewal and healing.
- Victorian House houses the chapel and staff facilities.
- Prairie Heights, with its wraparound porch and wooden rocking chairs, is an all-purpose conference facility with
- a Great Room that will accommodate up to 30 persons for a day-long program or meeting
- gas fireplace and breakfast nook
- windows with views of the woods and prairie grasses
- full kitchen and dining facilities
- eight private upstairs guest rooms with bath between each two
- a garden level apartment with full bath
- garden level meeting room adaptable for a variety of functions
- 37-inch flat screen TV for program DVD use
- wireless internet access
- The Labyrinth is an ancient sacred symbol. While walking the labyrinth, one enters into a mystery of the Circle of Life. Surrounded by nature, this is a place to pray, to heal, and to deepen awareness of life as a sacred journey.
- The Cosmic Walk is a 2 mile nature trail with 22 stone markers that tell creation’s story taken from the book of Genesis and expanded with the insights of science.
- Way of the Cross invites guests to meditate on the 14 Stations of the Cross under the sky and amidst the trees.
- The Wildlife Pond offers a contemplative setting to sit and pray, reflect, sketch, paint, meditate or relax. Nearby is the statue of Mary, Our Lady Seat of Wisdom.
- The Gazebo is a screened meditation area large enough for several to enjoy – a great outdoor alternative for a group breakout session.
- Fields of natural prairie grass and the timber of the Iowa countryside provide an ideal setting for walks and private reflection. Guests will also enjoy a variety of birds and wild life, including deer, wild turkey, pheasants, squirrels and rabbits
- Benchs and birdhouses throughout make for a pleasant experience.
For groups that request, healthy nutritious meals are prepared with local foods and served by the staff. Individuals may also use kitchen facilities to prepare their own meals. Due to repeated requests for recipes served at the Prairie, you can now order our: “Spirit of the Prairie: Catering to the Soul”– cookbook filled with recipes from The Prairie Retreat. See our Books for more information on getting your copy!
Believing that every person needs opportunities for Stillness in his/her life, fees at The Prairie are designed to be affordable to all.
Our Lady of the Prairie strives to be ecologically sensitive in policies and practices. All facilities are smoke-free.