“Coming Home” – A Lenten Journey: Vice Province of Singapore and Malaysia Retreat

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The Vice-Province Retreat was held from the 27th of February to 1st of March 2024 at the La Salle House, Singapore. Friar David, an Australian with vast experience as a counsellor and spiritual director preached the retreat. He is the primary author of “Restoring and Nurturing Right Relationships: A Resource to Guide the Formation of Religious for Ministry.”

Friar David Leary, OFM, guided us through a spiritual retreat focusing on the Lenten theme of “Coming Home.” Over the course of the retreat, David invited us to look at the lens through which we gaze on God, on ourselves and on others. The retreat began with the invitation and the gentle call, “A Time for Coming Home,” encouraging us to examine our spiritual journeys and consider returning to our true selves. Throughout the retreat, David encouraged us to reflect on the various barriers and challenges that often obstruct the path towards spiritual homecoming. He shared “Kairos moments” in his personal, pastoral, and professional life that helped him to face and overcome these obstacles with courage, humility, and gratitude.

As the retreat went on, David assured us of the power of God’s grace in the very face of our human fragility and to trust in the reparative process of “Falling Down and Coming Home.” Growth happens when there is repair after rupture. Through personal sharing, we were able to listen and learn to find hope and redemption in our return to God.

The retreat helped us to face the challenges in our journey of coming home (personally and communally), to stay with the struggles and sacrifices required to grow into a deeper relationship with the Divine. In prayer and through ritual we participated in the experience of being set free, forgiven, washed, and healed – celebrating the joy of unbinding one another and embracing the grace of working together to let each other go free. In the final session, “Coming Home Justified,” we felt blessed with the joy and peace of being reconciled.

Fr. Clement Lee, CSsR.

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