Discover God's Mercy, and His Loving Plan for Your Life
Our Lady of Santa Clara Retreat Center is operated by priests of the Legionaries of Christ community in Cupertino. We promote Catholic spirituality rooted in the Gospel, with special emphasis on Christ’s mercy. We offer confidential guidance, enlightening and energizing talks, seminars and retreats.
We believe that faith and reason go hand-in-hand, and we strive to help answer difficult questions. We want our place to be a safe, comfortable and beautiful environment where guests will come to know the love of Christ through the experiences we offer here. Fr. Thomas Vendetti, LC is the Executive Director and Gail D’Silva is the Director of Operations of Our Lady of Santa Clara Retreat Center. They are supported by an experienced executive board and team of volunteers.
Meet Our Executive Director
Father Thomas Vendetti, LC is originally from Rockville, MD. He joined the novitiate of the Legion of Christ in Connecticut in 1995. He studied philosophy and theology at the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum in Rome and obtained a licentiate in philosophy and bachelors in theology. He recently completed his MA in Christian Spirituality at Fordham University in NY, focusing on the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises. Since his ordination to the priesthood in 2009 he has served in the New York Tristate area for four years as vice rector and director of development for the Legionaries’ center of philosophy in Thornwood, NY, as well as chaplain for Regnum Christi in Manhattan. From 2013 to 2016 he was local director and chaplain for Regnum Christi in Chicago. He is currently serving in the Bay Area as director for Our Lady of Santa Clara Retreat Center and chaplain for Regnum Christi.
Meet Our Spiritual Directors
Fr. Brian Shininger, LC
Father Brian is a native of Defiance, Ohio. After obtaining his Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Bowling Green State University he entered the Legionaries of Christ in 1994. He completed his seminary studies at the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum in Rome, Italy and was ordained to the priesthood in 2005. He was engaged in seminarian formation and administration in Connecticut and California until 2010, after which he spent two years in Mexico City as a spiritual director for laity in the Regnum Christi Movement and assisted in retreats and missionary work. Since returning to the United States in 2012, in addition to being the religious superior for the local Legionary community, he has continued his work as a retreat director and spiritual director at Our Lady of Santa Clara Retreat Center in Cupertino, California.
Fr. Juan Sabadell, LC
Born in Spain in 1966, joined ECYD (1978/1981) in his teens to later become an RC member during the foundation of RC in Barcelona (1981). Entered the Legionary’s seminary in 1984, and after long years of formation in Spain and Italy, apostolate in the US and overcoming a battle with cancer (1998/99), was finally ordained a priest in Rome on January 2 2001.
Since Ordination, beyond youth ministries in the 90’s and 2000s in Madrid, he has assumed responsibilities of Business Administration and Development in North America until 2008. Served as Dean of Philosophy in Thornwood, NY (2010-2012) as well as Philosophy professor Lecturing on Metaphysics, General and Social Ethics courses. Close collaborator to Card. Velasio de Paolis during the ‘apostolic visitation’ from the Vatican (2012-2014), was, eventually appointed by Pope Francis 4thGeneral Councilor of the Legionaries of Christ (2014-2020). Assigned in late 2020 to the US, as he personally states, he is now excited to return to field work, exercising his priestly and direct pastoral duties serving as RC men’s section director and assist as Chaplain in the Locality of the Greater Detroit area.
Monica Trevino was born in Monterrey, Mexico. She is a Consecrated Woman of Regnum Christi serving in the diocese of Galveston-Houston accompanying women as a spiritual director, preaching spiritual exercises and giving formation courses. Monica has been consecrated for 28 years. After studying in Rome, she served 6 years in Chile and Argentina as the community director of the Consecrated Women and also worked with college students. From 2001 to 2013 Monica served as the territorial director for the Consecrated Women in North America overseeing the Consecrated Women and their collaboration in the apostolate of the Regnum Christi Movement in the United States, Canada and the Philippines. Monica, graduated from Notre Dame Graduate School of Christendom College where she obtained an MA in Theological Studies with a concentration in consecrated life. In May 2021, she completed a 3-year formation program in spiritual direction and spiritual exercises with the school of the Oblates of the Virgin Mary in Boston, MA.
Fr. Kevin Lixey, LC
Fr. Kevin is the new superior of the Legionary community in Cupertino, CA. He was ordained a priest with the Legionaries of Christ in 2001 and holds a bachelors in theology, an MBA in Theological Anthropology, and a bachelors in philosophy. Fr. Kevin has served as the vice rector of the Legionary novitiate in CT, the head of the “Church and Sport” section of the Pontifical Council for the Laity at the Vatican, the director of the Regnum Christi women's section in Atlanta, and the International Director of the Patrons of the Arts in Vatican City, among other positions. Fr. Kevin has written several books and articles and is fluent in four languages. He enjoys painting, woodworking, and playing the guitar and banjo.
Janet Lees and her beloved husband Tim, have 7 children and 14 grandchildren. With a degree in physical therapy from The Ohio State University, she and her husband opened their own physical therapy practice in 1992, to which she currently serves in a consulting role. She earned a certificate in spiritual direction over 20 years ago in the Ignatian tradition with a focus on the Spiritual Exercises. She serves as a spiritual director to many throughout the country with a special passion for the 19th annotation of the Spiritual Exercises. She serves the Cincinnati area as the coordinator of spiritual directors, their ongoing formation and supervision. On a territorial level, she is on the RC Life Team and serves as the Assistant to Spiritual Directors, providing formation and support to the spiritual directors in the territory. In addition, she speaks and gives conferences on spiritual direction and the spiritual life.
Fr. Simon Devereux, LC
Fr Simon was born in New Zealand. He joined the Legionaries in 1997 and studied in Connecticut, Canada and Rome. After his ordination in 2010 he worked on East Coast ministering to youth, young adults and families. Since 2018 he has been assigned to the Legionary community in San Jose where he ministers principally to college students and young professionals. Fr Simon enjoys playing the guitar, the outdoors and cooking. His daily blog, the Spiritual Espresso, can be found on Facebook and Instagram.
Fr. Stephen Ellis, LC
Eileen Wieck is a Catholic Lay Spiritual Director for Women.
Eileen brings extensive experience to her role, having served as a Spiritual Director for 28 years in the Regnum Christi Movement. Eileen is committed to helping women grow in both self-knowledge and understanding of their identity in Jesus Christ. Anchoring this with an invitation to grow deeper in their personal prayer life is what she feels will lead women to ultimate freedom and harmony in their lives.
Eileen’s favorite hobbies are spending time with her family in nature, having coffee with good friends, and gathering people together in ways that uplift and build community.
Eileen has worked professionally as a Practical Nurse in beautiful Alberta, Canada where she was blessed to grow up. Eileen moved to the SF Bay Area after meeting and marrying Vincent. Together they are raising 6 beautiful children.
Eileen is the founder of All Things Women, an apostolate for women who seek deeper intimacy with God and in building other women up to reach their full potential.