This marks the third year our high school students participated in a Lenten weekend long retreat. During this time, they are asked to forfeit their phones so as to welcome a deeper encounter with each other and Jesus Christ. A heartfelt thank you to Jayni Kaufman, Mike Kaufman and seminarian Kristian Sherman for giving of their time and sharing their personal relationship with Jesus with the young church.
None of this could be possible without the generosity of Mary Anne and Richard Pribis. Thank you!
Our discussions and journaling revolved around:
Life questions: some with explanation and some that cannot be explained. However, there is “One” very important question that we all must answer. “Who Do You Say That I AM”? (Matthew 16:13-20). The answer to this question is our own personal response but our answer to this question reveals the condition of our heart. Jesus was not concerned of what others thought of him, he challenges us with the question in order for us to contemplate the condition of our soul.
Recognizing Jesus in all people, based on Matthew 25:31-46. Remembering that whatever we do for the least of these we do for him. Also on trying to be Jesus to all, helping all that we see in need. The journal questions posed to the students were “When was the last time someone confused you for Jesus?” , “When was the last time someone was Jesus to you?”, and “What have you done for my people?” We are the hands and feet of Jesus.
Friendship. Paul told believers to be compassionate, kind, humble, meek, patient, forgiving, at peace with one another, loving, and thankful. Friends also teach one another and worship God together. Scripture tells us that friends love at all times, only wound us in ways that are trustworthy, are more loyal than family at times, provide mutual edification (improvement morally or intellectually), can impart wisdom, and they may even sacrifice themselves for us. Do you have those friends? Are you that friend?
At the conclusion of our retreat, we attend mass at St. Raymond Of The Mountains Parish in Donegal. We are always welcomed, as the pastor and parishioners love to see pews filled with teens. Our teens are invited to be the gift bearers.
This annual retreat could not be possible without the adult core team support from Jayni & Mike Kaufman and Seminarian Kristian Sherman.
Thank you to all who kept us in your prayers during this faith filled retreat!
~Mrs.Chris Williams, Director of JAL Youth Ministry