My dear GEM Family:
On Ash Wednesday, March 6, 2019, we will enter the holy season of Lent. Lent, from an Old English word
means Spring. The holy season is called Lent, in part because much of it is celebrated during Spring when all of creation is springing to new life. Even in snow country, there are visible signs of new life: The Robin is back in early March, the daffodils and crocuses emerge from the frozen ground, the tree frogs are practicing their cacophonous choruses all through the evening and into the night. And the frozen human being begins to thaw with quiet expectancy. Wouldn’t it be amazing if a similar but much deeper process of re-creation were to take place in our hearts during Lent, transforming our relationship with the Blessed Trinity and all our human relationships? Wouldn’t our transformation in Jesus help in the expansion of God’s kingdom in the hearts of those around us? While the Sun does it for nature, manifesting God’s glory in lavish tones, the Divine Son does it for our hearts, renewing them through His Sacred Mysteries in ways we could never fathom. During Lent, we will spend much time in prayer and spiritual reading, pondering on the salvific passage of Christ’s passion, crucifixion, death and burial. And we will support our journey to Calvary and into Jesus’ resurrection with fasting and good works. Our prayer for you and for everybody in GEM will be that your Lenten pilgrimage prepare you to experience the Risen Lord’s peace and joy in the unassailable assurance that in Jesus you are victorious over Satan, sin, and permanent death! The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us and we live in His glory, the glory as of the Father’s only Risen Son, full of grace and truth.
We have gotten the ball rolling on our GEM pilgrimage to the Holy Land. We sent out a flyer earlier in the month giving you all the details about the pilgrimage from January 25 to February 3, 2020. We will keep sending it out periodically as a reminder. The season of discerning whether the Holy Spirit is prompting you to visit the land of the Holy Family and registering as pilgrims is upon us. There is much interest both in Michigan and Texas, and hopefully in other states among our GEM participants. The registrations have begun trickling in and we are hopeful that God who has begun a good work through this endeavor will bring it to a holy completion for all of us.
Many have evinced an interest in our publication,
A School of Prayer and Holiness,
which gives us
a true appreciation of our Catholic vocal prayers that we have prayed since childhood. We have scheduled a Seminar on April 6, 2019 at our Conference Center, High Hill, Texas. Please check our website
to register. The GEM retreat weekend for Michigan at the Holy Cross Formation House on the Notre Dame Campus from March 1-3, 2019 is upon us. We had our second group meeting for the wives of deacons in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Holy Spirit continues to initiate movements in various members of our GEM family, inspiring them to reach out and witness to Catholics in our parishes through individual contact or inviting them to form or join small groups. These initiatives are bearing fruit and our small groups are expanding. Please pray for all these holy endeavors. We continue to pray that various renewal events will continue to be initiated by the Holy Spirit in GEM. We do believe that God is asking GEM to become the leaven that will invigorate the dough, the Body of Christ, in our local parishes and dioceses.
We continue to pray that 2019 will be a blessed year for you, that your commitment to holiness will grow stronger and deeper, that your desire to witness to Jesus by helping others to know Him in a personal and intimate way, will intensify. In our daily spiritual companioning reflections, we spent 16 weeks exploring Jesus’ question to us:
Who do you say I am?
As of February 25, 2019, we will explore the question:
Who does Jesus say the Father is?
Again, we request you to send to
email addresses of family and friends who would be interested in receiving our weekly SCR’s. With the archive on our website at their disposal, someone joining our group in midstream can determine the pace of their journey into the heart of God. We believe that our SCR ministry will help many, individually and in small groups created by individual initiatives, to develop and deepen their commitment to becoming saints under the direction of the Holy Spirit.
Please continue to pray for God’s Embrace Ministries, that we serve God’s covenant family wherever we are, generously and joyfully. May you be blessed in God’s Embrace! You are in our daily prayers.
Sincerely in Jesus Christ,