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Retreat Reflection, Live It

May 1, 2018
By: Louis J. Finnerty

Upon being informed that I would be given the opportunity to serve as rector of the Live It Retreat, I was ecstatic. The retreat exceeded expectations beyond words. Collectively guiding a group of leaders to share their stories and influence a group of students was truly indescribable. The cornerstone of Live It is to illustrate how one can live authentically and identify the direction toward which God is calling him or her.

I believe the greatest gift offered these students was our life stories; these talks not only allowed students to be vulnerable and open, but they also demonstrated that no life is perfect, regardless of how it looks from the outside. Inspiring and lifting others up according to their individual needs is a focal point in the Christian faith. I feel that the leaders on this retreat modeled Jesus’ behavior by showing principles of servant leadership and translating that to the retreatants. When given the opportunity to reflect and find purpose in life’s setbacks, individuals begin to feel God’s calling for them which leads to their ability to use God’s gifts for his mission – that is to love one another as he has loved us. Whether it is by spreading the Good News or learning to be vulnerable and loving, each retreatant left Chapman Lake with a better understanding of themselves and how they can stimulate a change in the world.

All things considered, this experience is one I will truly never forget and one that I will constantly draw upon into the future. In a time where individuals are more isolated and less Christ-centered than ever before, it feels incredible to know that we were part of an effort to guide students towards an understanding of how to use their gifts for something bigger than themselves. It all comes down to faith, and truly living it.

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