“My soul rejoices in God my Savior”
BEIT JALA – At the beginning of this year’s Advent season, the Catechetical Bureau of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem invited catechists in Catholic schools for a spiritual retreat on Friday, November 30, 2018, at the Latin Patriarchate Seminary in Beit Jala.
The retreat started with morning prayers followed by a meditation on Mary’s and Zechariah’s hymn of praise from the Gospel of St. Luke. The focus was on how Mary and Zechariah listened with docility to the voice of the angel, and they responded to the new call proclaimed to them, although each had a special plan for life. Therefore, they participated in the Plan of the Divine Incarnation.
In the example of Mary and Zechariah, the catechists are called upon to listen to the Word of God and meditate in their hearts, so that their testimony and teachings are sincere before their students and be the living example of accepting Jesus, the Emmanuel and the Incarnate Word, in their lives. Based on these evangelical texts, participants in groups shared with one another their spiritual experiences: What do these words “God Almighty, the Holy One …” mean to each one personally and how we can draw insights from the experience of Mary and Zachariah to enrich our spiritual life. After the program, the participants went home taking with them the Christmas message from the birthplace of Jesus, to share this spiritual gift with everyone.