BIS #7072 ‘Retreatainment’ at DB Makarpura

By Fr Bosco Carvalho for BISMumbai

The catechism teachers along with the Vocation Team of St John Bosco Parish, Makarpura, organized a one-day ‘Retreatainment’ for the children of the Parish on 24 September 2023. A total of 145 kids attended the event.

The day commenced with a special Children's Eucharist presided over by Fr Bosco Carvalho. He explained to the kids the significance of the word Retreatainment - a retreat with entertainment. It was a day set aside to come closer to God through viewing of movies, reflective discussions and fun activities. The theme of the Retreatainment was 'It is Cool to be Holy'. In his homily, Fr Carvalho suggested three ways to become holy - by being generous, by being grateful, and by reading the Word of God 10 minutes daily. The children made a commitment to follow these suggestions on a daily basis. 

The participants were divided into four groups according to their age, and a member of the Parish Vocation Team took charge of animating each group. The kids viewed inspirational and spiritual movies, and after viewing each movie, there followed a creative discussion with reflective question-answer sessions, case studies, paper puzzles, action songs, yells and claps, board games and solving of worksheets. This was essentially done in a group facilitated by members of the Parish Vocation Team as well as Catechism teachers. 

The children participated with full zeal in all the activities. They thanked all the animators for the well-animated retreat. One of the participants, Savio Mondal, expressed his gratitude and said, "I know that the Parish Vocation team takes a lot of pain at keeping children glued to the spiritual activities. Their content and style draw me to keep coming to Church often". The kids and animators had their meals together. This facilitated a spirit of bonding and togetherness. The Retreatainment ended by giving praise and glory to God by offering prayers and hymns of thanksgiving. 

The enriching Retreatainment was a combined effort of the Parish Catechism teachers and the Parish Vocation team. The former attended to the logistics and planning; the latter took charge of the animation and resources. A lot of planning and preparation happened before the event along with the guidance of Fr Issac Arackaparbil, the Parish Priest. The spirit of collaboration, teamwork and efficiency is indeed the hallmark of Don Bosco Parish, Makarpura.