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Zechariah, Elizabeth and Mary are three characters we are so familiar with; all three commonly exemplify the message of the first Sunday of Advent – HOPE. The three who were all present in the Gospel reading of St Luke in Chapter 1, translating fear to hope.
“Rejoice in HOPE’ (Rom. 12,12) was the theme of this year’s Advent Retreat, held last Sunday, November 29, initiated by the Verbum Dei Missionary Family in Mindanao. It was modified to observe existing health protocols, and done online via Zoom.
The retreat was a one-day event with three Guidelines, a pair of poignant testimonies and with more time of prayer; the event spotlighted HOPE, notably to entice the participants to make a decision to persevere in prayer. To be patient in tribulation, that regardless of the present-day challenges and affliction, we remain hopeful, rejoicing even in sickness, even we are weary or tired from the demands of work and school, we keep in mind that we are not alone, we are never alone - God is with us! Emmanuel! The afternoon prayer guideline ended with the invitation, a challenge to give hope to through the sharing of the Word of God; to create ripples of hope to break free from the dangers of despondency & spiritual death.
This year’s Advent retreat was a great occasion of conceding that what truly gives us the courage to be joyful always is the HOPE of THE LIFE to come, Jesus Christ.
The retreat ended with a Mass officiated by Fr. Bong Guinoo, FMVD.
Let us keep our spirits high this Advent by rejoicing in Hope!
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