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For our most recent Women's Retreat, Eighteen women gathered in the Grand Salle last Saturday to share stories about End/Beginnings. We found that some things never fully end; that where there is an end there is often a beginning; that some are planned and some are not; some are joyful; and others are very difficult.

The Retreat was very ably led by Debbie Groby, with support from Jeya Wilson and Christine Housel. All contributed by bringing food, helping set up and clear up – and especially by sharing and listening.

Some of reflections following the retreat:

"Just to say thank you to the organizers, to all the helpers, and to the participants. Another major success.

Verses from the prayer of Thanksgiving & Intercession that particularly resonated to me."

"Let us be set free by love, O God, Let us be set free to love and I would add ... "Let us be set free to accept love."- Helen

"Thank you so much Debbie, and a big thanks also to all of the helping hands and hearts that made our Saturday together so wonderful!!!!" "I'm still wearing my "Saturday smile"!! Love and Light, Kathleen

"I have two pictures in my memory bank of last Saturday’s retreat. One is the once empty vase gradually filling up with flowers of prayer, and then the image of the pebble falling into still water and sending out circles of prayer to the distant shore."

"Of course there is all the rest... it was a wonderful time with Emmanuel sisters as we get to know each other better through sharing in a retreat setting. Blessings, Marietta

"My thoughts on the retreat with the theme of Endings and Beginnings is the quote from TS Eliot:

"We shall not cease from exploration And the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know the place for the first time.” - Jeya

"I hold the feel of the two rivers: the river that flows around us, carrying us along, sometimes smoothly, sometimes through rough waters; sometimes we hold on to a rock to stay in the same place while life continues to flow around us; sometimes we try to direct where we flow, other times we allow ourselves to just go with the flow. Whether we are in one spot or being carried, our life flows along the river, the river that is also carrying all the other lives, to the ultimate destination. Then there is the river of love, God’s love, that flows through us, giving us strength and courage, faith and joy." -Helena

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