Quote

Quote

Saturday, September 3, 2016

The Journey From The Head To The Heart

Here at SPIRITUS, we are so blessed to have an incredible network of support aiding us in our communal journey, as well as our individual faith journeys. I believe that SPIRITUS helps form our faith in such a way that we can better live it from the heart as opposed to the head.  Blessed (almost Saint) Mother Teresa of Calcutta once said that, ‘the longest journey a man must take is the 18 inches between his head to his heart.”  As evangelizers, it does not suffice to merely know about our faith.  We must also develop a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, as well as gain insight into how God is working personally in our lives.  In this way we begin to make that transition from living our faith in our head to living our faith from the inside out, from our hearts. 

--Spencer


Beauty

One of my favorite things about Wisconsin is simply being surrounded by so much beauty. I love the outdoors, and I really enjoy spending our prudent days of self-care (what we call our days off) exploring the beauty all around us. Some of my teammates and I love hiking, so we have gone over to places like High Cliff quite a few times to adventure through the woods. Or other times some of us took the trip over to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, another stunning area of Wisconsin. Or I’m even recalling the nights that we spent at Camp Tekakwitha back in August, where I could look up at the sky and see more stars than I’ve ever seen before in my life.

We are surrounded by all these breathtaking masterpieces created by God, and we so often take these little things for granted, everyday wonders like the sunset that go unnoticed. But God is so present in this beauty, and a lot of the time it is by exploring His incredible creation I feel closest to Him. Because this beauty truly reflects His glory. No matter how many times I see the sunset, no matter how many times I look up at the stars or watch the snow fall all around me, God never ceases to impress me. To bring my attention to these simple yet so profound works of art because He knows they make me smile. In the middle of a hike, I often take a minute and pause just to listen to the silence, hearing nothing but the birds or the rustling leaves, a symphony so beautiful because it was written by God Himself. Or when I get to the place with the perfect view, I just stop and soak it all in. And as I feel the wind rushing around me, hear Him whisper in it “See all this that I created? You are even more precious to me.” Nothing can compare to the feelings of amazement and wonder, and all that overflows me in these moments is gratitude to God for such beauty and for the opportunities to meet Him in His creation. 

Throughout my time with Spiritus, I have certainly encountered God through the students on retreats, through prayer, and through my teammates, but another way that I am increasingly coming to experience Him is by just going outside and appreciating the nature around me. And something as simple as that is a prayer in itself.

--Sarah


A Prudent Day of Self Care

Being in SPIRITUS, we often get the question "Do you guys get any free time and if so what do you do?". Things to do around here are much different than what I have experienced from my last few years living in Portland, Oregon. Honestly though, nothing beats being in a beautiful community waking up every morning knowing that what you're doing has purpose by building God’s kingdom. However, even though we are extremely busy about once a week we do get a day we like to call our "prudent day of self care” a.k.a a "missionary’s day without a strict plan of where or what we need to be doing". On these days we like to do all kinds of different things but I think the majority would agree extra rest is a must.

We've had some pretty fun adventures on these days! I can’t lie,one of my favorite pastimes of SPIRITUS has been going to Culvers. As a native Southwestern Arizona girl I didn’t understand the marvels of a cheese curd and the exquisite taste of custard ice cream melting in my mouth!

#enoughsaid


Often one of the team members and I will go and hand out Divine Mercy cards and strike up conversations with the staff. Besides Culver’s though we often go on cool adventures to places like High Cliff for hiking or every now and then to a city.  On one occasion, half the team went to La Crosse, Wisconsin for Alexa's birthday, which was awesome! While we were there we went to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe! It was stunning and we even got to pray with a first class relic of St. Gianna Molla and St. Thérèse of Lisieux. During the day we also went up to the bluffs that overlooked all of La Crosse and you could even see three states from that spot! On our other prudent days of self care one of the main things a few of the team members and I do is go to the YMCA. Often we’ll work out but let’s be honest, most of the time we just love to use the hot tub because the winters here are FREEZING!
May God’s Blessings Be Poured More Abundantly Upon you!
In Christ,
Christen

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

We Are Back!

Hey World!

SPIRITUS Team 8 begins arriving this weekend and Brian, Brianna, myself and the staff are preparing for their arrivals. It's hard to put into words the life that this building fills with when we are all together, it truly is an incredible thing to behold! I can't wait for retreat season to begin and to serve our church in such a beautiful and necessary way. Please keep us in your prayers!

Jesus, we trust in You! Come, Holy Spirit!

Alexa


Friday, May 6, 2016

Come, Holy Spirit!

 "So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?”
He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” -Acts1:6-8

There are several things in this world that make me jump for joy, and the Holy Spirit is NUMBER ONE! Today starts the Novena to the Holy Spirit (link below for more information) which happens to end on my FAVORITE day of the year, Pentecost, which is also Team Seven's last day. Can you believe it? Just as the Apostles were sent out, so must we, as a team spread the truth and beauty of Christ and His church! But I am getting a bit ahead of myself; first we must wait.

It can be terribly difficult to wait. I know for myself, being a "Martha" I want to go, go, go and forget that in the waiting He is doing great things. Let us abandon our anxieties to the cross and wait in joyful anticipation for His promise of the Spirit-- the Spirit of CHARITY, of PEACE, of HOPE and of FAITH!

Please keep our team in your prayers as we conclude our year together. We have grown into quite the little family, and though we will meet in the Eucharist, it will definitely be hard to say goodbye to those not returning to Team 8. Thank you all for your loving support of our mission. We pray for you all each day.

Christ's peace!
Alexa

Praising the Lord in Song

King David was an amazing man of God; He fought for God, slayed giants for Him, and united the Lord’s people to Him. All this said, I say that His most manly accomplishment was writing the psalms and pouring out his heart for the Lord and growing in relationship with Him. Some of my favorite shows the absolute vulnerability he had with the Lord. We can unite our souls with his sorrows and joys when finding forgiveness and falling deeply in love with the Lord when praying with the psalms! He also teaches us that we can speak and even sing what is going on in our souls and be vulnerable with the Lord. As for myself, I find I connect through praise and worship and with songs of praise as well. I can pour out my pain or joy through the words and notes that with the Holy Spirit become a beautiful prayer of the heart. Over the past couple of years I have had many opportunities to develop and fall deeply in love with the Holy Spirit by leading and even on my own, doing praise and worship. SPIRITUS has given me both the time and helped motivate me to become a better musician and lover of the Lord by discovering this Charism that the Lord has given me!

--Arthur

God's Amazing Creation

One of my favorite things about Wisconsin is simply being surrounded by so much beauty. I love the outdoors, and I really enjoy spending our prudent days of self-care exploring the beauty all around us. Some of my teammates and I love hiking, so we have gone over to places like High Cliff quite a few times to adventure through the woods. Or other times some of us took the trip over to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, another stunning area of Wisconsin. Or I’m even recalling the nights that we spent at Camp Tekakwitha back in August, where I could look up at the sky and see more stars than I’ve ever seen before in my life.
We are surrounded by all these breathtaking masterpieces created by God, and we so often take these little things for granted, everyday wonders like the sunset that go unnoticed. But God is so present in this beauty, and a lot of the time it is by exploring His incredible creation I feel closest to Him. Because this beauty truly reflects His glory. No matter how many times I see the sunset, no matter how many times I look up at the stars or watch the snow fall all around me, God never ceases to impress me. To bring my attention to these simple yet so profound works of art because He knows they make me smile. In the middle of a hike, I often take a minute and pause just to listen to the silence, hearing nothing but the birds or the rustling leaves, a symphony so beautiful because it was written by God Himself. Or when I get to the place with the perfect view, I just stop and soak it all in. And as I feel the wind rushing around me, hear Him whisper in it “See all this that I created? You are even more precious to me.” Nothing can compare to the feelings of amazement and wonder, and all that overflows me in these moments is gratitude to God for such beauty and for the opportunities to meet Him in His creation. Because throughout my time with Spiritus, I have certainly encountered God through the students on retreats, through prayer, and through my teammates, but another way that I am increasingly coming to experience Him is by just going outside and appreciating the nature around me. And something as simple as that is a prayer in itself.

--Sarah