Communique #02 – Spiritual Development
National First Vice-President and Chairperson of Spiritual Development Shari Guinta, March 11, 2019
“…the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword…” (Hebrews 4:12)
The season of Lent has begun. For some members it is a time of deep devotion and reflection, for others a time of a little extra church attendance and for some, there may be no noticeable difference. Each to her own! In my youth it was strongly encouraged to give up something for Lent — chocolate, soft drinks or perhaps entertainment. It was not usually appreciated by a young person! Growing in my faith, I realized there are many ways to appreciate the season. I have delved deeper into reflection and observance of it by reading special books, offering more and deeper prayer, offering a special project assistance or helping someone requiring a little support. We might challenge members to make a special effort during Lent to concentrate in a special way on the environment through recycling, investigating ways to save and protect water or searching out prayers that refer to water in support of the theme Care for Our Common Home.
As I become more aware of the spiritual development standing committee, I understand some of the issues that councils commonly face such as questions regarding what members should do when cremated remains of a member are at a funeral rather than a procession of the casket. While there is no specific League policy, I might suggest members still wear their pins, scarves, etc. and show respect for the deceased. Perhaps in this case, the prayer service before the funeral becomes even more important.
Please share that a stole for ordained permanent deacons appointed as a council’s spiritual advisor is now available through national office at a cost $185.00. It may be worn when the deacon participates in a League mass.
Once again the League is sponsoring a mass on Vision TV, offered for living and deceased members and spiritual advisors. The taping will take place at Loretto Abbey Chapel, 101 Mason Blvd. Toronto, Ontario on Thursday, April 11, 2019 at 4:00 p.m. Encourage members to check local television listings for air times. Encourage Ontario members living in the area to attend.
I encourage you to encourage councils at all levels to focus on spiritual programs. Many excellent resources are available and members are encouraged to take the time to participate in programs whenever offered. Retreats for executive members of diocesan and provincial councils as well as spiritual development days for diocesan councils are encouraged. The current theme is a perfect focus for a retreat or development day.
Some resources worth considering:
• A video series offered for Lent available at www.marian.org/videos/
• Bishop Barron’s “Word on Fire” series available at wordonfireshow.com/
• Sign up for Matthew Kelley’s “Dynamic Catholic” available at dynamiccatholic.com/matthew-kelly/
• Free Lenten video series “Genesis to Jesus!” available at stpaulcenter.com
• Pope Francis, The Joy of Lent containing daily prayers, devotions and family devotions available at en.novalis.ca/products/pope-francis-the-joy-of-lent
• The Magnificat 2019Lenten Companion available at magnificat.com