Illuman New Mexico
Illuman of Colorado

 Men’s Rites of Passage

MROP Home Page Image-UPDATED-4.jpg


Transformation, initiation and getting the great vision can’t happen inside of the brick and mortar. You always have to take the boy into nature. There’s not a single exception to that.
— Fr. Richard Rohr

Illuman is a not for profit organization for men who are simply interested in becoming better, more authentic men. We welcome all men to our work without regard for your ethnicity, class, education, sexual orientation, religion or any other characteristic that might make you feel excluded.


What is the Men’s Rites of Passage?


For most men, the question of what it means to be a man is perplexing. Many men have a longing for the support and guidance of other men in their journey towards masculinity, maturity, and a deeper experience with the Divine. In ancient cultures initiation rites and vision quests were used to help boys make the journey into adulthood.

Opening the door to this journey can start with the Men’s Rites of Passage (MROP). The MROP is not just a men’s retreat, but five days of formal male initiation. These teachings on the “mysteries” and the accompanying rituals have been met with a very positive response in recent years. Over 5,000 men have now been initiated through these rites of male initiation over the past 20 years

This Journey begins with the age-old traditions that teach the five lessons every man needs to learn before he can fully engage in the adventure and mystery life will bring. MROP can awaken men to their own masculinity, their deep spirituality, their potential for leadership, and their life’s purpose. This is not about religion but about spirituality, about age old traditions that guide us into manhood (regardless of our chronological age), about coming to trust that there is something much greater at work in our lives than we could ever imagine.





  • A personal discovery about masculine spirituality and ‘the Holy Mystery.’

  • A time to savor the healing and awesome power of nature.

  • A process to address issues of loss, grief, and relationships with our father, other men, and others.

  • An opportunity to examine life’s priorities and ask courageous questions about your ‘next step.’

  • An invitation to listen to the ‘quiet voice of God.’

  • A chance to return to life with a renewed commitment to your gifts.


  • A traditional lecture-based event.

  • An informational workshop about men’s spirituality.

  • A sensitivity training or deprivation experience.

  • A threatening process that requires participants to engage in anything strange or unsafe.

  • A test of physical stamina.

Men are asked to come with a willingness to participate from beginning to end and not as an observer. Trust that this process, which has served others so well, will also meet you wherever it is you are in life, and help you move into wherever it is you need to go. Most of the men who come, have little idea about what to expect, and have come based on a trusted friend’s recommendation that “you should really really do this.” Others come because they are seeking for a transformative experience, and either through Richard Rohr or other people, stumble upon this event. Whatever drew you…you are welcome.


Why This Work is So Important

Men almost never talk to other men about feelings because doing so means unlearning a lifetime of defensive and aggressive posturing—the silent sizing up of the other, the camouflaging of spirit and soul bequeathed to us by generations of men who went to work and went to war and didn’t want to talk about it, thank you very much. For me and for so many others, to be a man among men meant to talk around things and keep my guard up; to carry the unique weight of manhood in mighty silence. Men are God’s loneliest creatures. Sure we have friends: our racquet ball partner, our poker buddies, our bar, our board room. But they’re not like the deep, whole friendships that women seem to cultivate with ease. Our friendships with other men tend to be limited; intense in one area—sports, business, politics—and silent about most others. It’s no wonder I never thought of other men as people. How can we ever know each other, how can we ever be understood, in silence?
— Rabbi Stephen Leder

What Men Are Saying About the Men’s Rites of Passage



Bear Trap Ranch is located just 35 minutes west of the center of downtown Colorado Springs. Although Bear Trap Ranch is close to downtown Colorado Springs, once on the property there is a distinct sense of being truly remote – a place of wonder, beauty, peacefulness and adventure with a deep sense of home. For more information visit


Are you ready to register
for the Men’s Rites of Passage?

Bear Trap Ranch
Colorado Springs, Colorado
June 10-14, 2020