Thursday, January 13, 2011

Christ Renews His Parish, yet again!

     It’s hard to believe that I didn’t know these women last year at this time. They were smiling faces among the thousands of people who attend our parish until a day and a half last February gave me the opportunity to meet and spend time getting to know some amazing women of faith.
     Though I haven’t had the chance to get together with everyone as often as we did when our team was in formation, we have had some great times together recently. One CRHP sister had a really fun Halloween costume party. We gathered for Christmas festivities at a local library, and many drove over the river and through the woods to a really fun Epiphany party.
     Last Sunday, one of our team members got up at Mass to give the ten reasons to make a Christ Renews His Parish (CRHP) weekend. I couldn’t help but smile when she said that you could sign your spouse up for the retreat. That’s what I did last year, and Kevin not only went on the weekend, but he also served on the formation team after that and is giving a talk on this upcoming Men’s weekend as well.
     She then asked all of us in the congregation who had attended a CRHP weekend to stand. We did, and she invited all of those who had not yet made a weekend to ask us about our experiences. I looked around and saw many men and women in our parish who I know would get so much from (and give so much to) those on the retreat.
     This evening we met in the upper room of Martin’s for a time of quiet prayer, lectio divina and reflection, then followed it with our usual food, fellowship, and laughter. We talked about the meal we’re going to make and serve for the upcoming Women’s CRHP weekend.
     Hopefully enough people will sign up for both the Men’s and Women’s weekends, so the formation teams who have been working so hard for months will get to put on the retreats they’ve prepared.
     If you had the chance to invest a day and a half to grow closer to God and thereby become a better parent, a better spouse, a better friend, would you take it? Yes. Then sign up for a local Christ Renews His Parish retreat!  Here are two examples of  in parishes that have used the CRHP program for a number of years: St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church and St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church.
       Links to two great articles for general info about Christ Renews His Parish are: here and here.
       If there are no nearby parishes with CRHP, a formation team can be requested through the CRHP national office:

CHRIST RENEWS HIS PARISH P. O. Box 19100 Cleveland, OH 44119
Office: (216) 731-7903 (voice mail)
FAX: (216) 481-1666
Evening: (440) 338-8469
E-Mail: CRHPFW@aol.com
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