BIS #6814 Salesian Family Retreat at DBYC Pune
By Ms Sudha Pillai for BISMumbai
The Salesian Cooperators, members of the Association of Mary Help of Christians (ADMA) and the Salesian Sisters had their annual retreat at DBYC, Pune on 15 and 16 October 2022. The theme of the retreat was ‘Partnering with Jesus’.
The preacher, Fr Mcenroe Lopes, chose the sessions with great care so that each of the participants could check themselves on their spiritual quotient and their Salesianity. It was a time for the cooperators to reorient themselves for a deeper communication with God. He reminded them that the vocation of cooperators is a calling to be more spiritual than ritualistic. He encouraged the cooperators to become workstations for Jesus to minister to the young.
The theme was explained with an acronym ‘PARTNER’ , where the importance of praying together was emphasized . Every small prayer said should be an appeal to God to touch the life of people who are in need . It is only when one reaches out to others out of love seeing Jesus in them, a person’s work gets sanctified. Then each one’s life can be told as an inspiring story for others to emulate. Nurturing friendship towards another human being brings peace to the soul. In the difficult situations of life they were exhorted to wait patiently and expect God to act in that situation. This is how a Christian should live as a representative of Christ and to bear witness for others to see.
Both the days of the retreat started with meditation. The first day meditation reoriented the retreatants with priorities of leading a life as a cooperator. The second day’s nature meditation grounded them to relate themselves with nature as a part of creation. Furthermore, the confessionals turned out to become spaces for healing for many retreatants. All the retreatants felt the need to repair their relationship with God. The input session on the life of Blessed Alexandrina DaCosta was a call for the Cooperators to live their lives in holiness.
The hospitality of the community at DBYC, Pune, and the serenity of the place gave the retreat a mystical feeling.