Hello from Team 4!
“Living holy lives is the goal of the Christian life and our essential purpose.”
This quote by Catholic book writer and speaker, Matthew Kelly clearly states the goal each Christian has, which is to simply grow in holiness. This quote is very relatable in team life as we begin this journey towards holiness, but in order to grow in holiness we need each other to help get us to that goal. One example of the importance of teamwork and reaching towards this goal was evident when my team had the incredible opportunity to visit the Dynamic Catholic Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio and to help serve by packaging Dynamic Catholic’s new Reconciliation program called Blessed. Not only was it exciting to help out and serve in this concrete way (many of us on the team are big Matthew Kelly fans and were pretty ecstatic to be in a building where Matthew Kelly has been) but it was also a wonderful example of the way each member on the team is so important to reach our ultimate goal to holiness.
While we put together the packages for Blessed, each member had a specific role. One teammate assembled the boxes; another, put in the student textbook, teacher’s manual, and DVD in the box; another closed the boxes and slapped on labels; and another supplied the material so that we would not run out. Each of these roles were important to reach the end goal: to complete the package of the Blessed program. In the same way that each teammate had a role in this process, each of us have a specific, unique role on the team to reach our end goal: holiness. Each of us on the team have been given by God unique gifts and talents and it is so beautiful to see the ways God is using us to build up His kingdom through ministry and retreat work.
We have put on around eighteen retreats so far, serving the Dioceses of Joliet, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Memphis, Knoxville, and currently in the Atlanta Diocese. It has been about one month on the road doing ministry work and there are so many ways that God has already revealed his love to us as a team. Our team has experienced God’s love through host families, safety in driving, generosity from parishes and schools, serving others through service projects (like at Dynamic Catholic), each others examples, and most beautifully, the opportunity to witness the transformation of retreatants.
One concrete way that God has showed His love to my team is through the way retreatants share their NET retreat experiences. One of the jobs on the team is to supply sheets of paper at the end of retreats where retreatants can share their experience from the retreat. It is so rewarding to read what the retreatants write and to see the ways God has revealed His love to them during retreat. Below are three quotes from three retreatants that we have recieved:
“I feel like it really helped bring me closer to God. All the presentations were influential and relevant to our lives. Thanks a lot! – Matthew L. (age 17), Columbus, GA
“Everyone was so open and it was really easy to open up and trust you guys.” – Maddy K. (age 16), Greenwood, IN
“I feel like I got to learn a lot more about God and how to be closer to Him.” – Gable T. ( age 12), Robbinsdale, MN
Receiving this feedback is such a beautiful witness of how God works through us, as a team and as His instruments. Without each of our teammates offering their gifts and talents it would not be possible to reach out to the youth we have and will minister to.
Our team patrons are the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Our Lady Undoer of Knots. These images have been popping up in host homes, churches, schools, and all over. Because it appeared that the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Our Lady Undoer of Knots were following our team, we took the cue and have been asking for their intercession daily for our team.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.
Our Lady Undoer of Knots, pray for us.
Team 4 – David, Yesi, Marrina, Angel, Maggie, Paul, Carolyn, Vinny, Mary, Joshua, Madelyn, and Louisa