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Retreat Masters

Meet the Retreat Masters


Fr. Ron Bieganowski, SJ

Teaching undergraduates at Marquette University has been Fr. Ronald Bieganowski’s major work since 1976, and he states that “it's been a wonderful experience.”  He’s regularly taught a two-semester survey of American Literature along with sections of the First Year Writing course and upper divisions courses such as "American Literature from 1798 - 1865," "The Poetry of Robert Frost," "Catholic Imagination in Recent American Writing," and "Recent Midwest Writings." Specific research has been on Robert Frost, Edgar Allan Poe, and James Baldwin.

Over the past several years, he has given retreats at the Jesuit Retreat Houses on the shores of Lake Winnebago and Lake Demontreville, near St. Paul. In 2007, he began to serve as Chaplain to the College of Business.  In addition to offering invocations and reflections on various occasions, he is also on call for special needs. Fr. Bieganowski says that these many years have meant experiencing what the Frost poem describes as uniting "My avocation and my vocation/ as my two eyes make one in sight."

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. Bob Dufford, SJ

Fr. Bob Dufford, SJ is a Jesuit priest and well-known composer of liturgical music. He has taught in high school and college, and given hundreds of workshops in liturgy and music. For nearly 20 years, he has offered retreats and spiritual direction at the Jesuit Retreat House in Oshkosh, Wisconsin and, since 2010, at Creighton University Retreat Center in Griswold, Iowa.

Upcoming Retreats

Carol Gibney, LMSW

Carol Gibney, LMSW, is a spiritual director, certified yoga teacher, and retreat leader who has been leading retreats at Fordham University in her role as a campus minister for the past 17 years.  She is delighted to offer this retreat as a way to integrate Ignatian Spirituality with the practice of yoga and meditation.

Upcoming Retreats

Patricia Cooney Hathaway, PhD

Patricia Cooney Hathaway, PhD is Professor of Spiritual and Systematic Theology at Sacred Heart Major Seminary. She received her doctorate from Catholic University of America, where she specialized in Systematic Theology, Spirituality, and Human and Spiritual Development. She has a certification in Spiritual Direction from the Shalem Institute of Spiritual Formation. In addition to teaching and committee work, Dr. Cooney Hathaway co-authored a grant proposal which was awarded by the Lilly Foundation for 1.5 million dollars for the education and formation of ecclesial lay ministers. She has been the Project Director for the implementation of this grant. She also received the Pope John Paul II Memorial, The Splendor of Truth Award, by the Catholic Lawyers Guild, Diocese of Lansing, Michigan.  

Dr. Cooney Hathaway authored the book, Weaving Faith and Experience: A Woman’s Perspective as part of a Call to Holiness Series on Catholic Women’s Spirituality, published by St. Anthony Messenger Press. Dr. Cooney Hathaway has been involved in the ministry of spiritual direction for over twenty years. She has done extensive lecturing nation-wide in the areas of theology, spirituality, and the relationship between human and spiritual development, and has published articles in those areas. She is married to Thomas M.J. Hathaway and has a son, Thomas Jr., and a daughter,Victoria.  

Upcoming Retreats

Bobby Karle, SJ

Bobby Karle is a Jesuit from the Midwest Province and the founder of Ignatian Yoga.  He began practicing yoga in 2009, in between serving as a Jesuit Volunteer in Belize and entering the Jesuits in 2010. He is a 500-hour yoga teacher, has a Masters degree in Philosophy from Fordham University, and Bachelors degree in Anthropology from DePaul University.

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. Doug Leonhardt, SJ

A native of Milwaukee, Fr. Leonhardt entered the Society of Jesus in 1956 and was ordained a priest in 1969.  Since his ordination, he has served as the Principal and the President of Marquette University High School, as the Director of Novices and the Formation Director of the Wisconsin Province, and as the Pastor of Gesu Parish in Milwaukee.  For a period of time during his 2003 sabbatical, Fr. Leonhardt directed retreats in Kenya and Uganda.  He has extensive experience in directing the Spiritual Exercises and is presently working as Jesuit Superior for the St. Camillus assisted living community.

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. Matthew Linn, SJ

Fr. Matthew Linn, SJ (with Dennis and Sheila Linn) focuses on integrating physical, emotional, and spiritual healing. He has advanced graduate degrees in sociology, anthropology, spirituality, and theology. Since 1970 he has taught courses and given retreats on healing in every state and in over 60 countries. Ordained in 1973, he currently lives in a Jesuit community in Minneapolis where he trains spiritual directors at Sacred Ground and serves on the editorial board of Presence: An International Journal of Spiritual Direction. Matt, Dennis, and Sheila have written 22 books translated in over 20 languages and with over a million copies in English.

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. Keith Maczkiewicz, SJ

Fr. Keith Maczkiewicz, SJ, a Long Island, New York native,  joined the New England province of Jesuits in the summer of 2008. Keith graduated from Fairfield University in Connecticut, and did two years of service with the Providence Alliance for Catholic Teachers (PACT), serving as a campus minister at a diocesan high school in Springfield, Massachusetts and living in community with other volunteer teachers.   After completing two years there and earning an M.Ed. from Providence College, Keith began working at The University of Scranton in Pennsylvania in the office of Campus Ministry doing primarily retreat and justice work while living in a freshmen residence hall. After taking vows in the Society in 2010, Keith completed his philosophy studies at Loyola University Chicago in 2013. From 2013-15, Keith worked in the chaplains’ office at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA. In August 2015, he began his theology studies at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley, CA.

Upcoming Retreats

Maureen Martin

Maureen M. Martin, MDiv, LCPC, is a counselor and spiritual director. Previously, she worked as a hospice chaplain, pediatrician, and pediatric nurse. After many life transitions, Maureen has woven together her losses and shares her insights of hope, even in crisis, through writing, public speaking and spiritual direction. She lives in Evanston, Illinois.

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. Richard McGurn, SJ

Fr. Richard McGurn, SJ, M.A. Psych., M.Div, was ordained in 1975.  He directed the internship for spiritual directors at the Jesuit retreat house in Cincinnati.  He has served the major superior of the Chicago Jesuits as his executive assistant and as director of formation for young Jesuits preparing for ordination and ministry.  Just prior to coming to Bellarmine, he was superior of the Jesuit community at Loyola Academy in Wilmette, IL.

Upcoming Retreats

Mrs. Mary McKeon

Mary McKeon is a member of Bellarmine's ministry staff, a spiritual director, and coordinator of women's ministry.  Mary is a graduate of Marquette University.  She taught school in Milwaukee's inner city before moving to Washington, DC to work for the United States Senate.  She and her late husband have a daughter, son-in-law and three grandsons who are the joy of her life.  Mary received her training as a spiritual/retreat director at the Jesuits' Manresa Retreat House in Bloomfield Hills, MI, where she served on the ministry team and became their first Director of Women's Ministry.  In 2014, Mary was the second person to be honored with Manresa's Lifetime Achievement Award.

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. David Meconi, SJ

Fr. David Vincent Meconi, SJ is an Associate Professor of Historical Theology as well as the Director of the new Catholic Studies Centre at Saint Louis University; he is also the editor of Homiletic and Pastoral Review. He holds the pontifical license in Early Church History from the University of Innsbruck in Austria, as well as a doctorate in Patristics from the University of Oxford. He has published numerous books and articles on the early Church, most recently is his 101 Surprising Facts About Church History (St. Benedict’s Press).  Fr. Meconi is a Fellow of the Augustinian Institute at Villanova University; he serves on the boards of the St. Benedict Forum at Hope College in Holland, MI, as well as on the ecclesiastical board of Boston College.

Upcoming Retreats

Catherine Palenik

Catherine Palenik grew up in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, the only child of Mary and David McKeon.  She attended an all-girls Catholic High School (Marian), then spent four wonderful years at Villanova University graduating with degrees in both sociology and history.  Catherine's graduate work was done at the University of Michigan where she received a Masters of Social Work degree.   This is where she met her husband, Christopher (now married for almost 8 years).  Catherine did geriatric social work and then served as a school social worker for several years prior to deciding to stay home with their oldest son.  Chris and Catherine now live in Geneva, IL and have three active little boys, John, Joseph and Michael.  

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. Jeff Putthoff, SJ

Fr. Jeff Putthoff, SJ is a Jesuit priest.  He is deeply interested in creating communities of healing, empowering young people, brain health, and finding God in all things.  He has worked as a high school teacher, associate pastor, executive director and high school president, using his unique experience in organizational dynamics, leadership, brain health and Ignatian spirituality, applying it to youth education and organizational life. He is a retreat leader and a director of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola deeply desiring to help others connect to God.   He is a gifted national speaker on trauma-informed care, organizational dynamics, youth formation, Ignatian spirituality and leadership.

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. David Shields, SJ

Fr. Shields entered the Society of Jesus in 1961.  After finishing his theological studies in Toronto, he was ordained a priest in 1973.  He served on the Pine Ridge Reservation among the Oglala Lakota (Sioux) from 1974 to 1989.  From 1990 to 1995, he was Assistant Director of the Family Life Office for the Diocese of Rapid City, SD.  In 1996, he began ministry among Milwaukee’s Latino population, where he currently serves as Executive Director of Casa Romero Renewal Center, an urban bilingual spirituality center.

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. J. Michael Sparough, SJ

Fr. J. Michael Sparough, SJ is a member of Bellarmine’s resident staff. He holds a Master of Fine Arts from the Yale School of Drama and a Doctor of Ministry degree from St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, IL.  He is the founder of Charis Ministries, the Jesuit retreat ministry for outreach to young adults in their twenties and thirties and has trained spiritual directors at Loyola University Chicago’s Institute of Pastoral Studies.  A prolific writer and speaker, Fr. Michael has published books on prayer and the sacraments with Franciscan Media, Paulist Press, and Liturgical Training Publications.  His latest book, What’s Your Decision? is published by Loyola Press. 

Upcoming Retreats

Carolyn Swabek

Carolyn Swabek is the Assistant Director of the Trinity Fellows Program at Marquette University, a graduate fellowship program that develops emerging leaders for social and economic justice.  She is a 200-hour Registered Yoga Teacher with additional training in yin yoga, yoga nidra, and Ayurveda. In Carolyn's weekly yoga classes, she focuses on building community, making the practice of yoga accessible to all, and honoring the spark of divinity within each person.

Upcoming Retreats

Team of Veterans

No Biography Yet!

Upcoming Retreats

Fr. Tom Weston, SJ

Fr. Tom Weston, SJ, entered the California Province of the Jesuit Order in 1965 and was ordained a priest in 1978.  Currently based in Oakland, CA, he has devoted most of his priestly life to counseling and retreat work with alcoholics and other addicts.  In addition to his Twelve Step work, he was part of a team that taught English to ministry students in Thailand and Vietnam each summer.  “Wherever he is, Fr. Weston sees the power of God working in people’s lives, but perhaps most acutely in his recovery work:  ‘People get well.  People come back to life.  Families come back together,” he says.  ‘It’s the Resurrection—and you see it all the time.’ ” (Tyson, Gail.  “Helping Others Find Sobriety.”  Mission 2008 Summer:  pg. 7.  Print.)

Upcoming Retreats

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