Summer News and let us know your thoughts. Our prayers are with you.
By Natalie Salameh
We hosted a “Revitalize in His Light” retreat day for 27 people on Saturday, June 13 at the Mother of Light Convent in Dartmouth, MA. The theme was taking time out of our busy daily schedules to reflect on two of the many gifts that God gives us to draw close to Him-- the Holy Mysteries (Eucharist) and the Word of God in Sacred Scripture.
Mother Marla Marie presented on the significance of the Holy Mysteries in our life, and also in her own life. She explained that when Jesus told us that we must “feed on Him” who is “the living bread that came down from heaven” (Jn 6: 51), our Lord was inviting us to become his intimate companions in every aspect of our lives. Mother Marla Marie explained that the word ‘com-panion’ actually means “bread-with-us” (‘com’ in Latin means “with” and ‘panis’ is “bread”). Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta said that the greatest poverty in our society today is that of loneliness. Mother Marla Marie explained that Jesus gave us the ultimate remedy for our loneliness in the Eucharist, when we are with Him “bread-with-us”. Later, an hour of adoration was offered before the Holy Mysteries to spend time with Him who calls us to intimacy and companionship.
We were blessed with a beautiful sunny day, so we gathered for a picnic lunch outside with lots of fellowship.
Sr. Therese Maria presented the second session of the day on inviting God to speak to us and within us through His Word, the Sacred Scriptures. She guided the retreatants in a lectio divina (sacred reading) and helped them to pray with God’s Word by meditating on Matthew 6: 25-34, which is Christ’s teaching on depending on God for everything in our lives and to stop worrying. Christ Himself tells us “do not worry about your life” (Mt 6: 25) because our Heavenly Father knows exactly what you need. Sr. Therese Maria explained that the Word of God is living and effective, it should be spurring us to change for the better in our lives. In their sharing on the meditation of St. Matthew’s Gospel passage, many retreatants mentioned that God was asking them to trust more in Him and less in themselves.
Consider a retreat event for your parish group, call the Sisters 508/996-1753.
On Sunday, June 14, we attended the Eucharistic Celebration commemorating the Centenary of the Daughters of St. Paul in at the Roman Catholic Church of St. Theresa of Avila in West Roxbury, MA. The Principal Celebrant of the Liturgy was His Eminence, Cardinal Sean Patrick O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston, along with a number of other clergy.
The Daughters of St. Paul is a Roman Catholic international religious congregation founded in 1915 in Italy by Blessed James Alberione and Venerable Mother Thecla Merlo. The Daughters of St. Paul are called to live by the way, truth and life of Jesus and to give this to the world by the use of every available means of communication. They carry out a new form of evangelization by living and witnessing to the Faith through communications and the media. May God continue to bless their ministry with many holy vocations.
The Maronite Servants of Christ the Light presented a retreat reflection on June 9 to the eighth grade students graduating from Trinity Catholic Academy, Brockton. The retreat, held at Stonehill College, was hosted and facilitated by Fr. Carlos Suarez, parochial vicar in the archdiocese of Boston, and focused on the students in their transition to high school.
The retreat began with Divine Liturgy celebrated in the Chapel of Our Lady of Sorrows with Fr. Carlos setting the tone for day by reminding the students that they are the “salt of the earth” (Mt 5:13), and are meant to bring the flavor of Christ to others. Fr. Carlos elaborated on this theme in the first reflection by reminding the teens that each person has an infinite value and dignity as a child of God, and how things can often go wrong in our lives when we forget to live up to this dignity.
Afterwards, Mother Marla Marie presented a retreat reflection on being “enough”. Specifically, Mother Marla Marie explained how we often hear the voice of our own insecurities telling us that we are not good enough, or that we do not measure up in some way. Mother emphasized that we are ‘enough’ because God knows and sees everything, even the inner secrets of our hearts, and he loves us as we are, despite our limitations and mistakes. Mother encouraged the students, as they make their transition, to always stay anchored in the love that God has for them, so that regardless of the trials that may come, they will always know that the Father has them in the palm of His hands (cf. Is 49: 16).
Entrance Day at Maronite Servants
Petra Nakhoul entered as a postulant of the Maronite Servants of Christ the Light in Dartmouth on the feast of the Most Holy Trinity on May 31st. Mother Marla Marie welcomed Petra at the closing of the Liturgy at the parish of Our Lady of Purgatory in New Bedford, and Father Jack Morrison, pastor, gave her a blessing.
Petra Nakhoul comes from Perth, Australia, and is the daughter of Sarkis and Georgette Nakhoul, parishioners of St. Charbel’s Maronite parish. Please join us in praying for Petra and her family as she begins the journey of religious life.
The Maronite Servants of Christ the Light are a newly founded religious congregation in the Maronite Diocese of Saint Maron and more information on their mission can be found at:
Maroniteservants.org or on their Facebook fan page (Maronite Servants).
Cody Shidell and Angela Chan received all three Mysteries of Initiation (baptism, chrismation and eucharist) on Saturday May 30th at Our Lady of Purgatory, New Bedford celebrated during the vigil Liturgy by Father Jack Morrison, pastor.
Both candidates were regular attendees at Mother of Light Convent, receiving their catechetical formation and preparation from Mother Marla Marie. Cody said the weekly classes “helped me to have a deeper understanding of the faith and have helped me to get closer to God with a life full of prayer”. Angela added, “the classes led me spiritually, and Mother Marla was there to guide me mentally and spiritually through the process.”