Rcia reflection retreat

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This weekend we had a Reflection Retreat for our RCIA and this is what they shared. It is good material for anyone...to reflect on what calls you to your faith and to know that God is the one who is in control.

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Rcia reflection retreat

  1. 1. RCIA Reflection Retreat A retreat for candidates and catechumens preparing for the Sacraments of Initiation in the Catholic Community February 18, 2012 St Michael’s Church11:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Theme: Reflecting on Your Call to CatholicismFocus: Listening to God’s Call11:00 a.m. Welcome11:15 Gathering: You are invited to quiet yourselves, to enter into this time of retreat with open hearts and minds, and to trust that the Spirit of God will continue to guide you through this day. Let go of any concerns or anxieties and allow yourselves to experience the love of God, the support of the community, and the actions of the Spirit in your lives in all that you experience this day. This time of preparation is bringing you closer to the full incorporation into the life and mission of the Church that you are longing for. Today is meant to be a special time of grace and peace for you. Gathering Song: “Gather Us In” by Marty Haugen Opening Prayer: Let us pray: Lord Jesus Christ, You are the Living Water for which we yearn, You arethe Light of the World, our Hope and our Life. Gather us to you today and make us a holypeople. Through your Holy Spirit, guide our day and our ways. May we be drawn moredeeply into the mysteries of love and salvation that we, together with your whole church,will celebrate in faith this day. We pray in your holy name. Amen. Story: The Missing Arms of Jesus11:30 – 11:45 Reflection/Open Discussion: Being the Arms of Jesus Discussion11:45 – 12:00 Journal in your journal on the following statements: I see myself as a disciple of Jesus because: I can be the arms of Jesus by12:00- 12:30 A Love Letter From God
  2. 2. 12:30 – 1:00 Lunch1:00 – 1:30 Guest Speaker – Becky Price (RCIA) “My call to become Catholic and what it has meant to me”1:30 - 2:30 Reflecting on your Call: (Use this hour and the following guidelines forreflection to share with your sponsor. You are welcome to go outside, find a quiet place to discuss thesuggested topics or spend the time asking questions you may have about your faith journey.Remember there are no stupid questions, no thought not worth expressing; your sponsor is here tosupport you on your journey in prayer as well as companionship. ) Be sure to bring your Bible andyour journal with your as you go out you may want to share scripture and journal about yourdiscussion.The upcoming celebration of your full initiation actually began a long time ago with your decision toexplore the process of becoming Catholic. Take the time now to look back over and reflect on theperiod of time that has led up to this moment. Spend time reflecting on your own journey of faith, using these lines of thinking: What factors prompted your decision? Who or what encouraged you to continue with the process of becoming Catholic, or fully initiated? Were there any doubts or setbacks along the way? If so, what were they? Did you notice any changes in yourself during this preparation? What are your feelings now? Looking Forward: In the future, “Christ will be your way, your truth and your life”.Receiving the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist marks an end of your preparation.It also marks a beginning, of a whole lifetime now centered on Christ and his people. What dreams and goals do you have for the future? Whom or what will you look to as resources for your ongoing Christian life? What practices of prayer or social justice begun during the RCIA process do you want to continue in the future?2:30 - 2:45 Ask, Search, Knock2:45 – 3:05 Gather in the grotto for Recitation of the Rosary3:05–3:20 Break, refreshment,3:20 – 3:35 Guest – Linda Roussel – Presentation of Prayer Books/Ministry of Prayer3:35 – 4:10 Break Open The Word4:10 Process to Church for Mass, dismiss from Mass We will not gather following the dismissal
  3. 3. The Missing Arms of JesusAs Jesus disciples, we are called to be his witnesses in the world today.We are to be like salt that savors (Matthew 5:13) or like a city on a hilltop, visible to all (5:14). Inother words, we are to bring the presence of Christ -- indeed, even be his presence -- to those aroundus.A man who owned a salvage business, recently wrote of an extraordinary way he experienced thiscall as he salvaged materials from an old church that was being demolished:"I took a crew of men with me to the church to dismantle and remove the things that I wanted to save.When I entered the church, I looked at the altar and was surprised to see a life-sized statue of Christthat had no arms. It was the type of statue where Jesus is standing up straight with his arms extendedwide. Since the arms on this statue were removable, I figured they must be around the churchsomewhere, so I had my crew look for them -- under the church pews, in the confessionals,everywhere -- but no one could find them. The rectory was behind the church, so I decided to ask thepastor who resided there. He told me he knew nothing about it."I was thinking, Why, Lord? Why is it left to me to do something with this statue? Why wouldanyone remove the arms and not come back for the statue? Who is going to want a statue of you withno arms?"When my crew finished removing the pews and the stained-glass windows, they began to dismantlethe communion railing. I stood there at the rail and looked up at the statue. Again, I thought that itwas a shame someone would do such a thing, and I was very sad. At that moment I heard a voiceinside me say, John, dont you know that you are my arms?Tears began to flow down my face. It was a moment I will never forget. I am retired now, but everytime I see a statue with its arms extended, I am reminded that all of us are the arms of Christ." Prayer Lord, let me bring your presence to all those around me. Help me to reach out to everyone I meet today. May I truly be your arms and hands to them.
  4. 4. WANTED: Jesus Christ Notorious Leader of an Underground Liberation Movement Aliases: The Messiah, the Son of God, King of Kings, Prince of Peace Wanted for: • Practicing winemaking, food distribution and medicine without a license • Interfering with businessmen in the Temple • Associating with unknown criminals, radicals, subversives, prostitutes and street dwellers • Claiming the authority to make people into Gods children Appearance: Typical hippie type: • long hair • beard • robe • sandals Beware: This man is extremely dangerous! His inflammatory message is particularly dangerous to youngpeople who have not yet been taught to ignore him. He changes people and claims to set them free! WARNING: He Is Still At Large!
  5. 5. A Love Letter From GodMy Love! (Song of Solomon 10:6), I love you (Jn 15:9). I have called you by name (Is 43:1). You are mine. Before I formed you, I knew you. And before you were born, I consecrated you (Jer 1:5). Youdid not choose me, I chose you (Jn 5:16). Because you are precious to me and honoured, I love you (Is 43:4). I have loved you with aneverlasting love, so I continue to show you my constant love (Jer 31:3). How can I abandon you? Mylove for you is too strong (Hos 11:8). Can a woman forget her own baby and not love the child she bore? Yet, even should she forget;I will never forget you -- I can never forget you. See, I have written your name in the palms of myhand (Is 49:15-16). For I, the Lord your God, am holding you by the right hand (Is 41:13). Do not be afraid, I have redeemed you (Is 43:1). I am with you (Is43:5). And be sure with this, Iam with you always until the end of the world (Mt 28:20). Do not let your heart be troubled. Trust inme (Jn 14:1). I will help you (Is 41:14). When you pass through troubled waters, I will be with you.Your trouble will not overwhelm you. The hard trials that come will not hurt you (Is 43:2). Do not worry (Lk 12:9). Even the hairs of your head have been numbered, so there is no need tobe afraid of anything (Mt 10:30). The mountains may depart, and the hills will be shaken, butmy steadfast love for you will never end. Come my love (Song of Sol. 2:10). Come, I will lead youinto solitude, and there, I will speak tenderly to your heart. I will be true and faithful. I will show youconstant love, and make you mine forever. I will deepen my promise, and you will really know methan as never before (Hos 1:14, 19-20). I am who I am (Ex 3:14). I am the Lord, Your God (Hos 13:4). The Faithful God (Hos 11:12).
  6. 6. Ask, Search, Knock... "...Ask , and it will be given you; Search, and you will find; Knock, and the door will be opened for you." (Mt 7:7; Lk 11:9)Do you honestly believe in these promises? Have you actually held in your own hands that which youprayed for?So often you knock until your knuckles are sore and still the door does not open. You ask yourself, "IsGod asleep or too busy to come to the door?" Has it ever dawned on you that perhaps you are knockingat the wrong house? Or that God does not live there? When your persistent banging is met by silence, donot persist . . . do not break down the door. Instead look around . . . Perhaps other doors have openedupon your knocking.Knock and the door shall be opened unto to you. Yes, a door will open but it will not always be the onebefore which you stand. A door will open . . . a different door perhaps, but it will be that behind whichGod stands to welcome you with open arms.Seek and you will find. Have you ever felt so silly trying to find God in your life . . . like a grown-upplaying a childs game of hide and seek? When you search for God along the path of life you have chosenor others have chosen for you and do not find him, dont think he is playing hard to get. Maybe you dontfind him simply because you are on the wrong road. When you get tired of looking for God on yourpresent path . . . Stop. Climb up to higher ground and see where your road ends. If it only leads inlandthen abandon it and look for the path that will lead you to the eternal sea. Life is not about traveling on abeautiful, well-paved road. Its about finding the right path. The right path might be rugged and risky butyou will be thankful for it because it will lead you to your destiny. Seek the right path and there you willfind God. Perhaps, even before you find God, God will meet you along his path and find you.Ask and you will receive. What have I more often received when I asked, nagged and begged God forsomething? Was it that which I asked for? When I pray and God does not grant what I want, perhaps heis offering what I really need. Sometimes, I ask God to help me hold on to something or someone but hedoes not give me the strength and the love to do so. Could it be that perhaps God wants to give me thegift of surrender and trust to let go because that is what I really need?God, when I knock and the door before which I stand does not open, send me your Spirit to show me thehouse where you live. And I will gently knock on the door behind which you stand knowing that you willopen it and welcome me with open arms.Loving Father, when I lie exhausted along the path I walk, send me your Spirit to guide me and to showme the path you have chosen for me so that I can find you there. And when my asking is met with silenceand my outstretched hand remains empty, send me your Spirit to teach me to distinguish what I reallyneed from what I simply want.Yes, I will knock, knowing that you will open YOUR DOOR. I will seek so long as you show me YOURPATH. And I will ask only that which is YOUR GIFT.
  7. 7. Emergency NumbersWhen in sorrow .............................................................call John 14.When men fail you .......................................................call Psalm 27.If you want to be fruitful ...............................................call John 15.When you have sinned ................................................call Psalm 51.When you worry ...........................................call Matthew 6: 25-34.When you are in danger ..............................................call Psalm 91.When God seems far away .......................................call Psalm 139. When your faith needs stirring .............................call Hebrews 11.When you are lonely and fearful .................................call Psalm 23. When you grow bitter and critical ..................call I Corinthians 13. For Pauls secret to happiness....................call Colossians 3:12-17. For understanding of Christianity .........call II Corinthians 5:15-19.When you feel down and out ................................call Romans 8:31. When you want peace and rest ....................call Matthew 11:25-30.When the world seems bigger than God .....................call Psalm 90. When you want Christian assurance ................call Romans 8:1-30.When you leave home for labor or travel .................call Psalm 121. When your prayers grow narrow or selfish ...............call Psalm 67.For a great invention/opportunity ...............................call Isaiah 55.When you want courage for a task. .............................call Joshua 1.For how to get along with fellow men .......................call Romans 12.When you think of investments and returns ................call Mark 10.
  8. 8. If you are depressed ..........................................................call Psalm 27. If your pocketbook is empty .............................................call Psalm 37. If you are losing confidence in people ................call I Corinthians 13.If people seem unkind ...........................................................call John 15. If discouraged about your work ......................................call Psalm 126. If you find the world growing small and yourself great... ...call Psalm 19. Alternate numbers For dealing with fear .......................................................call Psalm 34:7.For security .....................................................................call Psalm 121:3.For assurance .....................................................................call Mark 8:35.For reassurance ............................................................ call Psalm 145:18. Emergency numbers may be dialed direct. No operator assistance is necessary. All lines to Heaven are open 24 hours a day! Happiness is.........having the right number!
  9. 9. Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time 
Reading 1 Is 43:18-19, 21-22, 24B-25Thus says the LORD:Remember not the events of the past,the things of long ago consider not;see, I am doing something new!Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?In the desert I make a way,in the wasteland, rivers.The people I formed for myself,that they might announce my praise.Yet you did not call upon me, O Jacob,for you grew weary of me, O Israel.You burdened me with your sins,and wearied me with your crimes.It is I, I, who wipe out,for my own sake, your offenses;your sins I remember no more.Responsorial PsalmPs 41:2-3, 4-5, 13-14R. (5b) Lord, heal my soul, for I have sinned against you.Blessed is the one who has regard for the lowly and the poor;in the day of misfortune the LORD will deliver him.The LORD will keep and preserve him;and make him blessed on earth,and not give him over to the will of his enemies.R. Lord, heal my soul, for I have sinned against you.The LORD will help him on his sickbed,he will take away all his ailment when he is ill.Once I said, "O LORD, have pity on me;heal me, though I have sinned against you."R. Lord, heal my soul, for I have sinned against you.But because of my integrity you sustain meand let me stand before you forever.Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel,from all eternity. Amen. Amen.R. Lord, heal my soul, for I have sinned against you.Reading 2 2Cor 1:18-22Brothers and sisters:As God is faithful,our word to you is not "yes" and "no."
  10. 10. For the Son of God, Jesus Christ,who was proclaimed to you by us, Silvanus and Timothy and me,was not "yes" and "no, " but "yes" has been in him.For however many are the promises of God, their Yes is in him;therefore, the Amen from us also goes through him to God for glory.But the one who gives us security with you in Christand who anointed us is God;he has also put his seal upon usand given the Spirit in our hearts as a first installment.Gospel Mk 2:1-12When Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days,it became known that he was at home.Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them,not even around the door,and he preached the word to them.They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men.Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd,they opened up the roof above him.After they had broken through,they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic,"Child, your sins are forgiven."Now some of the scribes were sitting there asking themselves,"Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming.Who but God alone can forgive sins?"Jesus immediately knew in his mindwhat they were thinking to themselves,so he said, "Why are you thinking such things in your hearts?Which is easier, to say to the paralytic,Your sins are forgiven,or to say, Rise, pick up your mat and walk?But that you may knowthat the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins on earth"-he said to the paralytic,"I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home."He rose, picked up his mat at once,and went away in the sight of everyone.They were all astoundedand glorified God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this."

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