Welcome to the Ruah Center at Villa de Matel

Ruah Center, a ministry of the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word, focuses primarily on promoting the re-creation of the human spirit.  Its primary work is to plan for and welcome individuals and groups who seek healing afforded by an environment of beauty, quiet and reverence for all life.

Individuals who seek a few hours of prayer, a day of prayer or a longer period of retreat are welcome.  Groups who intend to give significant time to silent seeking and later sharing out of the silence are also welcome.

Ruah is located within Villa de Matel, the motherhouse of the CCVI Congregation, just a few miles from downtown Houston.  We share the convent with a number of the Sisters’ active ministries; however, Ruah’s spaces are set apart for silence.  Silence is presented as non-negotiable: it is offered as a gift and guarded as a treasure for those who seek.  Here people are led to rest in God’s presence; then the same Breath of God (ruah) who drew them here sends them out to confidently echo the good news of God’s love on the streets of their lives.

Who comes to Ruah Center?

The diversity of people that come to Ruah is a good example of what being “catholic” means:  grounded, yet welcoming members of many Christian denominations and some from other faith traditions.  Many people do not know that the hunger which leads them to seek a place of quiet is itself a gift.  When they taste and relish what we provide, we simply encourage them to develop trust in the deepest longings of their hearts.  Ruah also attracts many who have been offended or disillusioned by in the church in which they have grown up—then we provide experiences which initiate reconciliation.

We are also connecting with our Hispanic neighbors. When they attend the Sisters’ ESL classes, they can be introduced to Ruah where their faith is nourished and they are introduced to various ways of prayer.