About Us and Friends
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Linwood Spiritual Center, a 51-acre property overlooking the Hudson River, was a gift to the Society of St. Ursula from Jacob Ruppert Schalk. Mr. Schalk had no heirs, but wanted to leave Linwood to someone who would respect its beauty and use it for a good purpose. Our good friend, Rev. Robert Saccoman, was assigned to Good Shepherd parish in Rhinebeck and often visited Mr. Schalk. He introduced the sisters to Mr. Schalk and was instrumental in our receiving the property.
Mr. Schalk died in October, 1963. Some sisters came to Linwood the following year and lived in the Schalk house. In 1967, the 1883 wooden-frame mansion was replaced by the retreat building, and the new structure was officially dedicated in 1968. In 1976, the Guest House, the Hermitage, and the pavilion were added. A new residence for the sisters was built in 1998 and the Spiritual Center was also renovated at that time.
In the years preceding these additions, the sisters staffed the Linwood School, a Nursery and Kindergarten (1964-1981), Camp Linwood (summer 1964-1967), and started the retreat ministry. Linwood was the Novitiate of the Society of St. Ursula from 1968-1984. Today the retreat ministry continues to grow as more women and men find the peace of God in this beautiful place.