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This weekend I led a retreat for the parishioners of Our Lady of Lourdes and Saint Bernadette, Kingswood. We based the retreat around the Holy Spirit. The day was divided into three sections, firstly Who is the Holy Spirit, then what does the Holy Spirit do? and then lastly encountering the Holy Spirit.
In the first talk we stepped through the bible looking at points where the Holy Spirit appeared.
We finished by looking at a little more in depth at some of Ezekiel Prophesy and how it was fulfilled in Christ. We compared ourselves to the Bones in Ezekiel 37 and how the Holy Spirit breathes life in our bones when we ask to be filled with the Spirit. We compared Ezekiel 47 to John 7:37, Ezekiel describes a river flowing from the temple bringing life wherever it flows, Jesus after attending the festive celebrating this prophesy then announce that those waters flow from him. We compared ourselves when Spirit filled to those waters. It was a powerful and joyful session.
- Genesis 1:2 – Right at the start of everything the Holy Spirit is present at creation.
- Exodus 32:12 – The Holy Spirit give the gift of craftsmanship.
- Judges 16:2 – Samson is given strength to break the bonds he is tied with.
- Ezekiel 36:24 – The Holy Spirit works through Ezekiel allow him to prophesise, but the prophesy in this verse is about the time when everyone will have access to the Holy Spirit not just the chosen, judges and prophets.
- Joel 2:28 –Joel continues this prophesy saying the spirit will be poured out on everyone. Every race, women and men, old and young.
- Luke 1:15, Luke 1:35, Luke 1:42, Luke 1:67, Luke 3:21, 4:1, 4:14 – As we move into the new testament we see the Holy Spirit getting very busy. Working through Zachariah, Mary, Elizabeth, John, and Jesus.
- Act 2 – Then we jump to the time that all these passages in scripture had been leading to the giving of the Holy Spirit to us all. The Pentecost moment.
During the second session we looked at Baptism and Confirmation and spent some time discussing the gifts of the Holy Spirit. We finished the day with prayer, praying over people who wanted to receive the Holy Spirit into their live.
It was a joyful and God filled day.
by Deacon John Scanlon