The Scriptures remind us that we have been called to experience the fullness of life that God offers to us in ways that are both unique and personal. A wonderful summary of this message, that God has chosen us in Christ, is expressed eloquently in the first chapter of St. Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians. (cf. Ephesians 1:1-14) Over many years we have been blessed to come together, united in our faith, to seek God’s guidance and direction so that we can reflect more completely the life to which God calls us. Is it not a privilege to recognize the many ways in which God acts on our behalf and calls forth in us new life and great things?
In his recent letter to the entire Church entitled Rejoice and Be Glad, Pope Francis tells us that in responding to the call to holiness, “the important thing is that each believer discern his or her own path, that they bring out the very best of themselves, the most personal gifts that God has placed in their hearts. (cf. 1 Cor. 12:7)” (Pope Francis, “Rejoice and Be Glad”, 2018, p. 5)
Pope Francis then goes on to say that we need to see the entirety of our life as a mission. “Always ask the Spirit”, he says, “what Jesus expects from you at every moment of your life and in every decision you must make, so as to discern its place in the mission you have received.” (“Rejoice and Be Glad”, p. 10)
Our theme for this 2018-2019 retreat season ~ I Have Chosen You ~ is designed to help us to reflect on this invitation to grow in God’s love as disciples of Jesus, called to learn from him, called to develop a close relationship with him, and called to share in his mission. What are the implications of this extraordinary relationship to which we are called? We will explore this question together during our retreat.
As we begin this 99th season of offering retreats, please join us in thanking God for the blessings of the past and in praying that God’s abiding presence will continue to guide us into the future. As always, we are grateful that you have chosen to walk with us on this remarkable journey of faith.
As this new retreat season begins, I want to express my thanks and appreciation to our entire Staff, to all of our Presenters, to our Promoters, Co-Promoters, and Teams, to our Advisory Board, Promotion Committee, Volunteers, and Benefactors, and to you, our devoted retreatants. May God’s blessings be with you in all ways!
Sincerely in Christ,
Fr. Gerald, C.P.