DS-WA MGOCSM - Houston's Lenten Retreat 2015

St. Gregorios Orthodox Church in Houston hosted its annual Lenten Retreat on Saturday, March 14 from 1:00pm-6:00pm. The theme of the retreat was “Return to the Lord “taken from Joel 2:12 - “Yet even now says the lord: “return to me with all your heart with fasting, with weeping and with mourning; and rend your hearts and not your garments.” The main speaker of the retreat was Dn. Daniel Dennis Mathai. The event began with the sixth-hour prayer and concluded with evening prayer and confession. There were two group sessions that provided an in-depth understanding of the theme verse and the importance of confession during the Lenten season. The group sessions allowed participants to meditate on what it means to return to the lord, and restore oneself.  The retreat also had workshop sessions, and one of the sessions was led by Mr. David Babu. The workshop sessions were focused on the themes of the Holy Week and provided a greater understanding of the services and liturgy. The retreat also had a candlelight vigil, where participants were asked to reflect upon the message given through the sessions and workshops and prepare for confession. Those who came to the retreat also received a small icon with an image of the Lord on the day of resurrection. The icon included several prayers to help guide individuals in their prayer life. The event concluded with confession and dinner. Overall the retreat was a success and over fifty people were able to participate. The retreat provided a great opportunity for meditation, personal reflection, and spiritual restoration as we move forward in the journey of Great Lent.