“Accustom yourself continually to make many acts of love, for they enkindle and melt the soul.”
— St. Teresa of Avila
Today I am finishing my letters to the girls who will be attending the Epiphany gathering (a retreat program for incarcerated youth). I write a letter to each girl with words I hope will encourage them on their spiritual journey. Some of these girls have never received a letter or a card unless it was a summons to appear in court.
The key element of the Epiphany event is to try and model the love of Jesus for them. Many have no real idea of what love is about. So have had the world love used to abuse them. Some perceive love as being someone’s possession. Most have almost no inclination of just how much God really does love them.
I know that in the next three days I am going to see several of these girls’ souls melt from the fire of love God will send their way. We will have a birthday party for these girls. Some have never had a birthday party. We will give them small gifts and personal items that the institution will allow them to have. We will feed them pizza, chicken strips, roast brisket and all kinds of sweets and other goodies they normal do not get to have. We do this to show them that even though we are strangers, we are also the hands and feet of Jesus to them this weekend.
There will also be times of telling, not preaching, the story of the Gospel. We will do dramas, have talks, and set around tables of small groups and talk about God, about Jesus, Mary, and the disciples. Those of us who volunteer for this work will get to see God do some miracles.
If you would not mind, please pray for the girls who will attend that they will experience the love of the Lord through strangers who we hope someday will be brothers and sisters in Christ. Thank you!