Advent retreat with Father Esker and Father Pawel Jurkowski, C.Ss.R.
Father Pawel Jurkowski challenged us with the dilemma of "whether or not the events of Mary's life and our lives have anything in common". What can I learn from Mary? To help resolve that dilemma, he used a scene from the Annunciation so we can understand that we are chosen and called to see God's will and respond to it in a positive and creative way. The second passage from the Gospel that Fr. Pawel used was the Magnificat through which he helped us to understand the mystery of the gift and thanksgiving. The third biblical image that he referred to was Golgotha to underline out faithfulness and necessity to give witness to our faith.

An important part of his preaching played images and testimonies of people of faith whom he met in his travels and pastoral work in Russia. This year's Advent Retreat was a great opportunity to familiarize ourselves with the life and challenges of the Catholic Church in Russia. For many parishioners it was a great time of reflection and prayer. Many used the time of this Retreat to reconcile themselves with God through the sacrament of Penance. It was a wonderful, spiritual experience. May God bless Father Pawel and his ministry.

Summary of four days of retreat with father Esker available here
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