Bishop Patrick J. McGrath celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving in early July before friends, family, religious and the faithful before Presentation Center closed its doors for good.
A ministry of the Sisters of the Presentation, the Center served the faithful for more than 60 years in the hills of Los Gatos.
“In the beautiful surroundings of Presentation Center, we have experienced God’s presence whether through novitiate days, retreat and vacation times, collaborative dialogue with diverse planning groups, or meeting friends and family,” said Sister Michele Anne Murphy, PBVM, President of the Sisters of the Presentation, during the Mass. “This place is indeed holy ground where the Sisters and guests have been welcomed and spent time of renewal through the hospitality extended by the staff, the quiet nurturing of their bodies and souls afforded by the natural setting, and enriching experience of new relationships in a variety of ways.”
The Bishop said the closing of the Center was of those decisions that just had to be made. It holds a special place in the history of the Diocese of San Jose.
“It is here that the First Bishop of San Jose (Pierre DuMaine) would come to get away, to clear his head from all of the demands, do a few laps in the pool and return to the valley refreshed, energized and ready for more,” said Bishop McGrath, the Diocese’s second Bishop, during his homily. “How many schools considered the Center as their ‘home away from home’ for retreats, workshops and days of prayer? Over the years, just knowing that “Pres Center” was here offered a healthy counterpoint to life in the ‘rat race’ below. And so, we have come full-circle: those who served as guides to others seeking the rest of the Lord are themselves in need of this very same rest and acceptance of their limits, and so deserving the peace that the Lord alone gives.”
The Bishop continued, “But all of us who know these women are fully aware that they will not set down the charism given to them by Nano Nagle to leave the lamp burning. Surely, they will do it in new and creative ways, as the Sisters of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary have done from the moment of their founding.”
Sister Michele Ann said the property was being prepared for sale.
“While necessary at this time in history, closing this important ministry has not been an easy decision for us. In the future, we hope that the legacy of Presentation Center as a Catholic spirituality center in the Santa Clara Valley, will provide inspiration for others to explore, in new ways, opportunities to continue to nourish and deepen spiritual growth,” she said.