Sunday, August 21, 2011

Rooted in Love

This past Friday and Saturday I was so blessed to have taken part in Rooted in Love: a Retreat for Catholic Homeschooling Mothers. The event was located at Saint Therese Retreat Center, a beautiful little patch of ground in central Ohio.

You could feel the peace surrounding the chapel and buildings as we pulled into the drive. My friends and I excitedly grabbed our overnight bags and snacks before heading to check in, passing a precious grotto of Mary along the way. Once we checked in, it was time to pick out our rooms for the night. It was a small, quaint room, and naturally close to the bathroom for me.

The evening was filled with Exposition and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, a wonderful talk by Fr. Stash Dailey on the dedication to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Confession, Benediction, a short overview of Saturday's plans and small group meetings, and spa night!

Saturday was full as well with Rosary in the morning, followed by breakfast, morning prayer and talks from two veteran homeschooling moms, more small group talks, Mass, lunch, afternoon talks based on where you are in your homeschooling journey, Divine Mercy Chaplet and Litany of the Saints, and a final farewell.

It truly was a beautiful 24 hours. There was so much information and words to ponder that I cannot even begin to convey them to you. But the one thing that most spoke to my heart during this time was the importance of the family unit and that is where Satan tries to tear us down. I wish I could use the words the others used, first introduced by Fr. Stash, and then brought up time and again from other speakers (how amazingly our Lord works!). This is something that I have struggled with over the last few months in particular. I can feel Satan trying to undo my family, using my fears and my doubts over my abilities as mother, teacher, wife, follower of Christ. Doubled onto my feelings of inadequacy as the leader of our domestic church and not wanting to be (wanting my husband to fulfill that role) which leads to an entirely different set of doubts. All I can say is that Father's talk hit me hard and made me realize what has been going on these past few months. And all I can say to that is, praise God!

I will most certainly be attending next year, baby on hip and all. It was a perfect kick to start off another year of homeschooling. (I think we need one in February too!)

A statue of Mary outside my bedroom window.

Statue of St. Therese (there were also relics of hers but I was not able to grab a picture).

Painted pictures similar to this adorned the chapel's walls.

The chapel - and my camera did not give this picture justice!

"Loving God and knowing our faith is the core curriculum; all the rest is supplemental." ~~paraphrasing a wise homeschooling mom

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