Faith- “Confirmation Retreat”

By Father Apolinar Samboni

The Confirmation participants of Our Lady of Fatima engaged in a spiritual retreat on Saturday, March 9. Father Cong’s spiritual theme focused on “Who Am I in Christ and How Can I Stay Connected”. Some of us often wonder as to why do we focus on reviving the Holy Spirit within the young at heart. At times, we tend to center our thoughts on what we see on the outside, a busy body that stays constantly connected and updated within the reality of the technology world, often a vital source of their often true self. Much to our surprise, many had a difficult time understanding how to respond or just having the ability to put their feelings and thinking into their own personal words.

See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.  Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. (1 John 3:1-2)

As spiritual leaders of this revival, observing their reactions, helped us understand that strengthening the love of God among our youth is beyond the surface of their well-being. Many of our adolescents carry within them a hungry heart filled with an honest faith that is waiting, at times unknowingly, for that right moment that will spark the fire of God’s love within them. Let us understand that the Lord does not focus just on the talented or creativity of tomorrow’s leaders; instead He prefers to work through those who are small, simple and flawed enough to willingly erase all of their wrong doing. “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.” (1Corinthians 1:27-29). God’s purpose for His young people is to glorify within their hearts, His love for us all because through them shines the brightest light within a humbling heart.

“Am I connected to God, the source of goodness, happiness and truth? This question, a question of wonder, revealed to the catechumens that their connections lacked much understanding of even what it truly meant. Without their connections of their reality, their cell phones, many found themselves pondering the question at hand without an ability on how to make the simplest of personal connections with our Heavenly Father. Their time with God, without their phones, left some of them realizing that it is important to take time from their personalized world, disconnect for a moment from their technology ties, and realize the greater of importance…seeing themselves as God sees them. But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (1Peter 2:9).