May 18, 2010 Here is the most recent picture of the spiritual group
with Yolanda absent.
Our humble spiritual group recently welcomed three new candidates, Ena, Kyiem and Cecilia. As we are saddened to say good bye to Debbie who left to try out the life of the Little Sisters of the Poor (we continue to keep her in prayer), we are blessed to have two novices, Yolanda and Teresa. Last weekend we were together for our annual group retreat. We are sorry that Yolanda could not make it to the retreat this year. We look forward to meeting and getting to know her in person next year. We are united with her in spirit and in prayer.
The three candidates were invited to spend the Saturday with us. It was wonderful to see that everyone was happy and friendly toward one another. Despite the fact that we struggled to follow closely our Silent retreat schedule, we were able to travel back and forth several times a day to join the
We also enjoyed our picnic lunch and dinner on the Abbey ground since there was not enough room for all of us at New Helfta studio apartment, and neither did we have enough time for traveling back and forth between Vespers and Compline. Everyone took turn to read while others ate in silence. The Road of Hope: A Gospel from Prison by Phanxico Xavie Van Thuan Nguyen was very inspiring.
As much as I am grateful to God for sending these new candidates, I am very much aware of the challenges ahead as I continue to work with each individual to see whether she is really called to join this group. The Lord has told us that many are called but not all will persevere, and according to Rev. Father’s years of experience, many may feel attracted to some kind of a group like ours, but not all want to join for the right reasons. I am praying for the gift of discernment to carry out God’s holy will for all of us, members and those who are inquiring as we travel together on the journey toward God.
It is not so important whether one joins or belongs to a certain group. What matters most is that she seeks to do his will.
I thank Rev. Father for his sincere effort to help out with the group as it grows. I am grateful to God for giving Rev. Father the patience in teaching and guiding me as I try my best to be a good servant and sister to the group.
Thank you Lord!
Dear Blessed Mother, please intercede for us, and may our desire to seek and follow our Lord always please Him. Amen.
January 18, 2010 Rev. Father told me today: “Life goes on.” Yes, indeed. Despite the many challenges we have been going through as individuals and as a spiritual group, we persevered and have been growing spiritually. Praise the Lord!
Our ex-member Vy is expecting her first baby. We are praying for her and her family.
In December, 2009, we had a new postulant, Yolanda Nava from
Debbie feels called to walk a different path from ours (She would like to join
the Little Sisters of the Poor. God’s
willing! We are praying for her), we
have two new candidates, Teresa Kim from
We are planning for our next annual retreat in May. With our Lady's intercession, may the Lover of our soul whom we seek bless and guide our every effort as we persevere to seek and love him in faith as spiritual sisters under the help and guidance of Rev. Father John Eudes. AMEN.
March 7, 2009 Our next annual retreat
is the last weekend of May 2009. We will
finish reading Steps of Humility and Pride this month and the next book will
be: John Cassian: Conferences by Colm
Luibheid (Translator), Owen Chadwick (Designer). By then, our ex-member Vy
will be married. Lucy will be a happy
grandmother of the beautiful Caitlin.
Karen is happy with her new job. Debbie is checking out a couple of orders sometimes mid-March in NY city. Sauling is dating. Minh is working hard to expand the cards business while continuing to paint new icons. She will be giving 3 talks during Lent, one in
Oct 4-Oct 15, 2008 Pilgrimage to
grace of God and the help of our Lady, our group went on a pilgrimage to
July 30, 2008 We had a blessed annual retreat last May. We experienced a different kind of grace which will help our growth in God as we continue to seek his will for us together as spiritual sisters. Soon I will update it with some pictures which captured special moments of our days together.
February 5, 2008 Have a Blessed and Fruitful Lenten Season. We commend our two
members: Sauling and Debbie to God as they facing
January 1, 2008 ”Under her spiritual father's guidance and teaching, Minh has been making her temporary vow of chastity one year at a time and learning how to live it for almost ten years. Today, in the presence of Abbot John Eudes (spiritual father), Abbot John (confessor) and almost 50 family members and close friends, she made her perpetual vow of chastity for the love of Christ on the feast of his Blessed Mother, the Mother of God. Like for Karen, we pray for her love everlasting love for God and her fidelity in serving him and his church.
October 2007 We are praying for one of
our members, Karen Webb, as she is preparing spiritually to be consecrated
publicly as a Consecrated
on November 18, 2007.
June 8-10, 2007 Our first Annual group retreat
June 9, 2007Happy Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ & Rev. Father's 51th Ordination of Priesthood (6/9/56)
We spent three days living
together as a small spiritual community of sisters, following the Cistercian
way of life, in the New Helfta studio. The
studio apartment is about a seven minute drive from the Genesee Abbey. Daily,
we joined the brothers for Lauds, Vespers and Mass, and had our conference with
Rev. Father. This link will take you to a typical day of our First Annual Silent
It was a wonderful and grace-filled experience for all of us. New Helfta studio was set up like a chapel, except the Eucharist was only present in our hearts. We each had our own choir stall. When we did not join the brothers at
We worked for a few hours each day. We took turns cooking, cleaning up and working in the garden. We had a time slot when we could talk and share our faith, which was good for us because two of our members live far away and the retreat was the only time when we could visit with them in person.
We had time for private
reading and study after supper. We also took advantage of the wonderful weather
and took a walk to
We were at peace and happy
being together as a spiritual group of sisters, of one heart and mind, trying
to seek and love God and one another. One could never share nor describe how
wonderful and edifying she felt from the experience. The photos taken during
2007 retreat will help speak of the
peace and the joy we shared together. May the Spirit of the Lord
who brought us together as spiritual sisters, continue to teach and guide us as
we assist one another on our way to seek and love him. Amen.
April 2007 One of our ex-members has asked to rejoin the group. St. Benedict advised us to allow her back. So we welcomed her. We pray and hope that she will persevere and grow to love God who is especially present in our sisterly spiritual friendship.
January 30, 2007 Our spiritual group sent in our end-of-the-year comments and reflections. Praise the Lord! We made it through our first year and are growing despite of the fact that three out of seven original members withdrew from the group. As sad and discouraging as it might sound, Rev. Father reassured us that having more than 50% of us persevere and make progress in our spiritual life is not a bad thing! Quantity is a plus but without quality, we will not last! Everything seems to be better and go smoother but not without the members' extra effort in facing challenges. Even so, we believe we carry the right cross with the sisterly support and fatherly guidance of the group members and the spiritual advisor. Those who stay sure have proved to have the spirit and the character which are suited for our particular spiritual group.
We thank God for all the graces he has been bestowing on this group of friends, and also for his loving mercy to help us overcome and learn from the difficult trials. Only through these experiences we will learn to know ourselves and others better as individuals and as a small Christian community as much as to practice virtues through humility, trust, perseverance and charity. Dear Blessed Mother, please continue to intercede for us. Amen.
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