Sunday we begin the Advent-Christmas season-- new years's day in the Liturgical Year. Besides making preparations for celebrating Christ's birth, it is a time of hope.
If ever we need hope it is now-- living in such an uncertain world since 9/11. The Sunday readings during Advent have little to say about preparation for the coming of Christ in history but much to say about the final coming of Christ at the end of time.
I think they speak to these recent events and challenge us to prayer and to hope for a world of Peace-- trusting in Christ, the Source of Peace.
I think of it also as a time of new beginnings. We are delighted to see an increasing interest in our volunteer program and are limited only by our lack of space. Only the Spirit knows where that will lead.
We are encouraged also by our renewed collaboration with Safe Haven, the refuge for the abused in Columbus, the Rape Crisis Center and Recovery House. Through our grants from the LaCross Franciscans we are able to offer our center as a place of spiritual solace for them. The January retreat, made possible through a grant from the Sisters of St. Agnes, is dedicated to the study of The Big Book and will minister to the addicted.
We also welcome the Rachel's Vineyard retreat for those who suffer after an abortion. We have always reached out to those suffering from the painful experiences of the past but this new year sees us ministering to them in a new way.
We always welcome our friends-- new and old-- and offer them the healing love of God, comfortable accommodations and rather decent food!!
The blessings of the Eternal Word-made-flesh be with you now and in 2002.
Jean Haspeslagh makes a point with Elaine Fish and John Maloney at the Oak Tree Inn as they gather to celebrate fifteen years of Dwelling Place history.
November 4 was the date chosen to anticipate the anniversary of the inception of The Dwelling Place. January 1, 1987 Clare and Maggie started out from Mount St. Francis, Dubuque, Iowa and arrived in Brooksville the next day. So much has happened since that first day in Mississippi. God has been so faithful in giving us a vision and in seeing us through.
We spent the day marveling at the many blessings and miracles that have flooded through the years. We celebrate the thousands of retreatants that have come, the development of the land, the building of the hermitages, guesthouse, and staff house.
We rejoiced in all the generous service of those who have served here and those who have donated their time, talents, and treasures. Those present shared the part that they played in Dwelling Place history and how the ministry here touched their lives.
We invite you, our readers, retreatants, and friends, to stop by anytime and help us celebrate!!
We appreciate your understanding in this. We do not want this to be prohibitive for those in need. The grants we receive help us to offer scholarships for those unable to pay the full price.