Do not get too excited because we still do not have a computer, but we made time to come to the internet cafe today. I hope I can remember all the things we have done in the last two weeks.
First of all I wish to extend my congratulations to dear Gina and Elizabeth. Welcome to us! I am very happy for you (and for us too) and I wish I were there to give each a hug. Well, I trust my dear Sisters made you feel really welcome.
We have continued with the regular groups and meetings: the biweekly group at La Roma Neighborhood, the Thursdays group at our house (we begun a Life in the Spirit Seminar for this group last Thursday), and our meetings with the Fatima Youth Ministry office.
The group from La Roma just celebrated their 2nd anniversary, and we went to have a Mass together at the Basilica of Guadalupe (here in Monterrey) and then we moved on to the house of Mrs Berthita, where they had prepared a steak dinner with guacamole, salsa, refried beans and all the works. They also had a delicious cake, with an egg-based icing that was just delicious. Needless to say I enjoyed that dinner greatly. (they also had nopalitos salad, and mama Chayitos salsa). They send their love to all the Sisters, especially to those who have taught them these past two years.
We are also attending a couple of courses: one from the Archdiocese to form formators of youth group leaders, and the other one on Tanatology, at the La Salle Parish.
Tanatology, as I just learned, is the study of the process of dying and the dynamics that go on with the person who is ill, and in his or her family, both of whom are affected by the experience of loss. I think it will be very useful even for our interaction and ministry with so many people who seek us out to talk about their losses, sometimes not necessarily through a death, but painful nonetheless.
Last Thursday we went to the Ladies group at La Salle, and they were as sweet as ever. Thelma and Diva (the leaders) are about 80 years old, and are as Charismatic as can be. They send their greetings to all the Sisters at Prayer Town.
Then on Saturday we went to give a PreConfirmation retreat to a group of about 18 kids from the Jessed covenant community. This was a very delightful group of kids. They have grown up amidst prayer meetings and ministries of Jessed, and even one of the sons of Federico Carranza was there, his name is Mauricio. A couple of the kids were already given over to the Lord, and that was very obvious, but most of them, inspite of growing up in a covenant community, seemingly had not yet made a personal commitment with the Lord.
They were very attentive and very respectful. They participated well in all activities (although, as any 15 year old kids, they were somewhat self-conscious of the praise times). I enjoyed teaching them about the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and, even though the teaching was almost one and a half hour long, with a break in the middle, they were interacting all the while, and seemed to have understood what I taught them. I used many props and other tricks to get them to participate, so they were very attentive all the time, and also asked intelligent questions.
At the end we had a time of prayer for each one of them. Some rested in the Spirit, and at the times of the testimonies, the highlight of the retreat was this time of prayer. The Lord really touched each of them in a special way, as they shared during the testimonies. We were able to see, even in these Charismatic kids, the transformation that the Holy Spirit works in anyone that opens up to Him. It is awesome to behold.
On Sunday we attended the diocesan Charismatic Youth Mass, and that was also a good thing to do. The Charismatics really stand out in a crowd, weather they are young or old. They hang out together in groups that seem strangely happy. Father was very good with his homily, and I am sure that the kids enjoyed it, and benefited from it, because he made them think of the things that still bind them from serving the Lord wholeheartedly. This priest is also a psychologist, and knows how to take advantage of his knowledge for the good of his sheep and lambs (Padre Felipe).
There are a number of upcoming events, such as a Youth party at Fatima (we will not attend this one, since it is only about socializing), and there will be a meeting with the Archbishop at the Arena, followed by a concert by Martin Valverde (the author of the song "No one loves you as I do" in Spanish of course). I guess I will have to tough it out! :)
I send my love to each one of you, especially our newest members, and our Sisters in Formation. I remember you every day and miss you greatly, although I do not have much time for missing. I pray for all of you daily, and keep you in my heart and thoughts.
Much, much love, in Christ,Sister Magdalena Casas-Nava