Thursday, May 20, 2010

Meeting For Prayer at St. Michael's Ridgetown

Not Your Usual Prayer Meeting

Monday night was prayer meeting night at St. Michael's Parish in Ridgetown. To call it a prayer meeting might conjure up the usual gathering of charismatics, but would yield the wrong image.

It was more of a gathering for prayer.  Wayne Zimmer and I drove down from London for it, and arrived shortly after 7 pm. It was planned to have the prayer meeting happen after a period of Adoration, with the Blessed Sacrament remaining exposed for the duration.

But, two things happened that changed what was in the plan to what occurred. First, Father Sam did not arrive until near the end, and having Jesus physically present changed the perspective.

One of the slams against the Charismatic Renewal in the Church has been about its seeming exclusivity.  There was a prophecy about 20 years ago at a conference of Charismatics in Toronto that said that the renewal had to die back into the Church.  It did not say that we were to ignore the Holy Spirit, but were to be like yeast added to the dough, allowing the bread to rise.

So, for about 45 minutes we sat in quiet Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.  About 18 of the faithful sat quietly in awe and reverence of He who died to save us, and was resurrected so we could see that He had won the victory over sin and death.

Then, Wayne got up and spoke for several minutes about the reading of the Gospel from the Feast of the Ascension.  What he spoke was strange to our ears, and to his.  He told us that Jesus has ascended, and we must let go of Him, not hang on to Jesus here on the earth.  He reminded us that Jesus sent us the Holy Spirit to take His place among us, every moment of every day.  We have the sacraments that He instituted, particularly the Eucharist, and we need them in our lives.  But, though we must keep Him close in our heart, we must let go of Him in the flesh.

There was some sharing of what the Lord has been doing in people's lives lately, and one woman shared a vision she saw unfolding of Jesus weaving a tapestry with many colored threads of different lengths, with gold woven through them.  In the vision she saw Jesus weaving the tapestry with the cross as the needle for each thread to be woven in.  It's a pretty cool image, I think and appropriate for the Body of Christ.

After some time of musical Praise and Worship, Father Sam arrived and spoke for a bit, then went up to the altar, and bringing the monstrance with the Blessed Sacrament down from the altar approached each of us so we could gaze on Christ in the Eucharist closely.

The meeting quietly came to an end.

It was not like prayer meetings I have attended elsewhere, yet it was delightful in its simplicity and beauty.  I'm certainly going back.

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