The final touches of the Viatorian House of Discernment are in place, with 45 historic photos framed and mounted in groups, by location, on the second floor hallway of the Province Center. The display gives a visual timeline of the Viatorians coming to the United States, but most of all it features Viatorians themselves and the institutions they served.

Viatorian Community Archivist Rebecca Skirvin, left, and Associate Joan Sweeney curated and hung the photos.

“The running themes are origins and new beginnings,” says Br. Peter Lamick CSV, Director of Vocation Ministry. “The pictures tell the story of how our mission has both moved and put down roots in our different regions, including Colombia.”

Plans to establish a House of Discernment have been in the works for months, as Br. Peter and members of the Vocation Ministry Team aimed to create a structured program — and space — for men who are discerning a call to Viatorian religious life.

For starters, the second floor bedrooms have been freshened up, with a community room and small dining room created for the new residence. Images of Saint Viator and the Venerable Louis Querbes are featured prominently and now both sides of the long hallway offer a panorama of intriguing photos.

This grouping depicts St. Viator Parish in Chicago. The main photo is of Br. John Koelzer with first communicants

The idea to create a House of Discernment came out of extensive reflection and dialogue among members of the Vocation Ministry Team — and research into best practices of other religious congregations.

“The House of Discernment will serve as a space for Vocation Ministry to welcome discerners for short and long-term experiences, including overnight, weekend, weeklong, summer and a 10-month residential program,” says Br. Peter, who along with Br. Rob Robertson, CSV, have moved in. Br. Rob will be the Residential Program Coordinator and local Community Director.

During their stay, discerners will participate in retreats, direct service, shared meals and recreation. They also will have access to long-term internship experiences, with the opportunity for intensive involvement in the Viatorian mission, serving with Viatorian professed and associates.

The hallway collection is coming together.

“One of the most significant factors in a person’s discernment is their rapport with members of the community,” Br. Peter says. “Discerners’ participation in visits and activities will facilitate these connections.”

This new House of Discernment will make its debut next week, when professed members of the Viatorians gather at the Province Center for a retreat. A tour of the second floor makeover and a description of its vision will be part of the week.

“We’re excited,” Br. Peter adds. “It offers a whole new facet of vocation ministry.”