Saturday morning reflections a chance to draw closer to God
Don't let Covid lockdowns get you down. Try spending some time with God and fellow members of the Church
There’s a silver lining to every grey cloud: lockdowns and the harsh restrictions necessary to stop the spread of That Virus have also created opportunities to get back into a deeper connection with God – starting this weekend.
Two online mornings offered by the Dominican Sisters of St Cecilia mean all of us can go on retreat for just a few hours to turn our gaze back towards God, listening to what He has to say to us through scripture and reflections.
Anyone can participate and the experience can be powerful.
Entitled Know that I am with you always (Mt 28:20): Nurturing Discipleship in Challenging Times, the two-hour mini-retreats offered under the auspices of the Archdiocesan Go Make Disciples Mission Plan will focus on helping us grow in our daily lives as disciples of Jesus Christ and ways we can do that.
The first runs this weekend on Saturday 3 July (see details below). The second follows a week later on Saturday 10 July.
The reflection mornings promise a powerful spiritual punch. Only a fortnight ago, the Sisters conducted the first in a series of one-day retreats focusing also on the theme of Discipleship. Interestingly, it saw some return to the Sacrament of Reconciliation after an absence of many years, Sister Cecelia Joseph OP told The Catholic Weekly afterwards.
The mini-retreats are being offered by Sydney’s Dominican Sisters of St Cecilia under the auspices of the Archdiocesan Go Make Disciples Mission Plan. Photo: Patrick J. Lee
A chance to invest in ‘time-out’
In that sense, it was life changing for some, she said.
Emma Gilchrist, parish administration assistant at St Canice’s Parish in Elizabeth Bay, said the Cathedral day she attended far exceeded her expectations.
“I saw it as an opportunity to invest in some ‘time-out’ and went with a very open mind, but was totally blown away by how much I gained from a spiritual perspective,” she said.
“I didn’t realise how much I wanted and needed something like this.”
Be open to the Spirit
Fiona McGrath also said she is grateful to have attended the first Discipleship Retreat and has encouraged others to attend one if possible. The Family Educator at St Brendan’s School, which is connected to St Brendan’s Parish in Annandale, said it was “wonderful to experience Eucharistic Adoration in the crypt of St Mary’s Cathedral, have the opportunity for reflective prayer and learn about the modern day saints”.
For Sister Cecilia Joseph, the first event was a clear success.
“The Holy Spirit was so present and the grace was abundant,” she said.
“We hope that those who attend these retreat days will encounter Christ in a new and deeper way that they will meet Him personally, as they never have before.”
The Know that I am with you always talks, prayer time and discussions will take place via Zoom, the online meeting platform.
For those interested in experiencing the reflection mornings, registrations are easy. The details are:
Saturday 3 July 2021
Venue: online via Zoom – register here
Saturday 10 July
Venue: online via Zoom – register here.
For more information contact Helen Wagner at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 0418 204 169.
(Taken from Catholic Weekly, 2 July 2021)