Tuesday, March 15, 2011

say a prayer...or ask for one

You expect a “spiritual retreat” to be a time for personal reflection, silent meditation, prayer and song…but a Cursillo Weekend clearly transcends that stereotype. If you’re Catholic—faithful or still searching—you should check it out at at http://www.natl-cursillo.org/. Last night I returned, sleep deprived and ears ringing, from another 3-day weekend where I was surrounded by women who came together as strangers and departed, three days later, as friends. Women whose wisdom and devotion filled my empty cup…as, I hope, mine did theirs.

Even though we associate faith with something that is joyful and peaceful and gentle…it can be a very powerful force in the world, regardless of the theology we embrace or how we practice it. When you put sixty faith-filled women (or men) together for three days and they begin to share their stories, a couple of things happen. Friendship unfolds. Wounds are cleansed and dressed, if not healed. The world comes away stronger, kinder, and braver because of the stories we hear…just as it does with the stories we write. What better way is there for us to know one another and to know ourselves...but through the characters who populate our lives, the places we’ve been or hope to see, through our victories and defeats?

Story telling connects us all across time and space, across age and gender, across race and color. And so does faith.

This week, read a good story…or write one. Enjoy a good song…or sing one. Gaze on a beautiful picture…or paint one. Ponder your faith…or your lack of it. Say a prayer…or ask for one.

What is your story about?
“Tell your story: yes, tell your story!
Give your example. Tell everyone that it’s possible,
and other people will then have the courage to face their own mountains.”
--Paulo Coelho--
In my next post, we’ll be moving into springtime.

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