This fall, my parish — Our Lady of Good Counsel — is going to be focusing our efforts on facilitating encounters with Jesus. This will mainly be done by via the Alpha program (of which I know just about nothing… yet…).
What made me think about this this morning was a podcast I was listening to by Fr. John. No. Not our Fr. John, but Fr. John Nepil of “Catholic Stuff You Should Know.” His podcasts are hilarious and very informative. 🙂
His latest podcast is called “Theology of Mountaineering” and in it he and Deacon Nathan talk about a recent pilgrimage they made where they were away from technology. I think one of the great things about this podcast was that they noted that while surrounding yourself with beautiful places, great people and removing distractions may be helpful to dispose yourself to having an encounter with Jesus, they don’t guarantee that you will have an encounter.
So, don’t get discouraged if you “do everything right” and still feel that the personal connection you were seeking “didn’t happen”. No time spent in prayer is wasted. Even if you don’t “feel” anything. And faithfulness and perseverance in prayer is important.