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This committee can be challenging, rewarding and educational as well! Being appointed chairperson of spiritual development by the national president made my heart skip a beat at the 98th annual national convention held in Winnipeg, Manitoba last August, but I have always felt that God not only leads us to places of challenge, but gives us the grace to deal with it. What we do, we do for Him.

“But be doers of the word, and not merely hearers…” James 1.17-18, 21-22,27
Taken from the 2nd reading 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time.

The spiritual development and education of members is an important part of this committee and there is no better place or focus than in the parish. It takes some work to plan good programs and services for members. Don’t scrimp! Look for devotional material from various resources and share your findings with council members.

Spiritual development:

a) spiritual growth of members
b) study of Catholic teachings
c) role of women in the church
d) evangelization and mission assistance
e) lay ministries
f) ecumenism and interfaith endeavours

My thoughts:

  • Use the League Prayers
  • Look for prayers that are associated with the national theme.
  • Try something new!
  • Read scripture and use members of the assembly in the prayers and services. Let them read and lead.
  • When reading scripture, use the bible. Don’t just type it out on a piece of paper or use the script written in the program.
  • Get your spiritual advisor involved. Ask for some assistance and if he/she is at the meeting or the service, have them DO something. Choose prayers that suit the time and/or the season. Rather than use a Lenten service in May, consider choosing something more appropriate to Mary.
  • Are there ecumenical conferences that you can be a part of?
  • Support the missions, especially Catholic Missions In Canada, one of the permanent voluntary funds for national council.
  • Investigate Lectio Divina and Shorter Christian Prayer (I will share more information on these in future communiques).

Encourage diocesan councils to offer spiritual days, programs and retreats, and encourage members to attend them. Consider teaming up with other councils in your area to host the events.

I expect to learn a lot these next two years. I humbly ask for your prayers to help me be a “doer of the Word.” May God bless you in all that you DO.

Shari Guinta
National Chairperson of Spiritual Development

October 5, 2018