Jan Richardson
Illuminated Advent Retreat

December 1 – 28, 2018
Led by Jan Richardson

New for Advent 2018!

An invitation into the heart of Christmas

This online retreat is not about adding one more thing to your holiday schedule. It is about helping you find spaces for reflection that draw you deep into this season that shimmers with mystery and possibility.

This four-week retreat offers a space of elegant simplicity that you can enter into from anywhere you are. Intertwining reflection, art, music, and community, the retreat provides a distinctive opportunity to travel through Advent and Christmas in contemplation and conversation with others along the way.

How we will enter the sacred space of this season

Each week of Advent we will open a new door—

Week 1: In Which We Begin Again
Advent is the start of the sacred year. This turning invites us to begin again, and again: to undertake beginning as a practice and an art, with all its messiness and wonder. What threshold waits for us right now, and where do we find the courage to cross it?

Week 2: By a Strange Road
Angels and mysterious travelers, annunciations and visitations, dreams and signs and unforeseen journeys: the stories of Advent and Christmas take us down curious roads, offering a sacred strangeness that invites us to see our life anew. How do we stay open to the turns our own story can take, and entertain the divine messengers who arrive in disruption?

Week 3: Repairing the Ruins
The sacred texts of this season speak of redemption and return, of a ruptured world made whole, and of a God who seeks out what is most broken. Restoration is slow work. It tends to be subtle and incremental, borne of the small mendings by which big change comes. So where do we find sustenance to engage this work over time? What stokes our endurance and feeds our hope?

Week 4: The Night of Heaven and Earth
The line between the worlds becomes blurry in this season. Or perhaps this time simply shows us what is always true: that heaven encompasses and inhabits earth, spilling into this present life. God approaches us not as an unknowable stranger but as one who comes wearing our own skin. Where do we find and welcome the Christ in whom earth and heaven meet?

Here's what you get

  • You will receive three emails each week (Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday), plus orientation and closing emails. These emails will feature written reflections, questions, and blessings by Jan, along with artwork she has created for your Advent journey.
  • Music from Garrison Doles will weave through the retreat, drawing you deep into the gifts of this season with his original songs and reflective instrumental pieces.
  • An optional online forum will be available for you to participate in as much or as little as you'd like, as it fits for you. The forum is a space where you can offer responses and engage others during the retreat. Jan will participate regularly in the ongoing conversation that will take place in the forum.

Cost for this Advent retreat

Individuals: $90

Groups: We are delighted to offer substantial discounts for groups and congregations. To learn more, visit Illuminated Info for Groups.

Give the Illuminated Retreat to a friend as a gift! Visit Illuminated Gift.

How you sign up


Have questions? Visit our FAQ page for more info.


Click the button below to register and pay for the retreat. You can pay by PayPal or credit card. (You don't need to be a PayPal member; on the PayPal page, simply scroll down to where it says "Pay with Debit or Credit Card.") This payment button is for individual registrations. If you want to register a group, contact us (retreats at janrichardson dot com) as soon as possible so that we can provide the group rate for you, along with info on how to register.

Apply discount code

If you would like to pay by check, email us to register and arrange payment.