Towards the latter portion of the school year at the Convitto, Fr. Cafasso urged his student priests to join in a spiritual retreat. Don Bosco himself joined the retreat and wrote the following in his memoirs:
"In my first year at the Convitto, 1841-42, Fr. Cafasso invited me to join him in making the spiritual retreat for diocesan priests at St. Ignatius Shrine above Lanzo."
"His departure for Lanzo was always an event. Once the day was known, coachmen vied with one another for the privilege of driving him in their carriage. Later, on the road up the mountain, a crowd of poor people would press around him begging for alms, which he distributed to each with appropriate words. 'Endure your poverty with patience,' he would say to one. 'Be devoted to the Blessed Virgin and go to confession, he advised another. 'Obey your parents,' he enjoined a third."
The retreat went well. A Jesuit priest in the person of Fr. Menini preached the instructions, while Fr. Guala the meditations.
However, for Don Bosco, the most efficacious sermon was delivered by the saintly behavior of Fr. Cafasso, who himself was a co-retreatant. Fr. Cafasso was punctual in all the activities, and he would devoutly offer his service in the practices of piety. He was always recollected and a reflection of a man who was truly united with God.