Solitude with the Lord

I attended a silent retreat from Holy Wednesday to Easter Sunday at the Convent of Servants of the Lord and Virgin of Matara in Lipa, Batangas.
Silent it was indeed as we were not allowed to utter words to one another, not even engage in eye contact. The main focus was the Lord, following St. Ignatius de Loyola’s spiritual exercises that entailed reading bible passages and meditation.
Having attended silent retreats thrice during Holy Week starting 2012 (except in 2014 when I underwent surgery in February) and gaining new spiritual insights each time, I can now define what a silent retreat is, based on my personal experience. It is a break from my routinary activities and pressures of life while imagining myself “in a desert with no one” and realizing that amidst daily concerns, God is beside me.
Since solitude with God was a rare moment, I treasured my 5 days’ stay at the convent… reading given bible verses, trying to immerse myself in given scenarios before the Blessed Sacrament and realizing His love for me despite my shortcomings. The meditations resulted in seeing personal meanings to the Lord’s Passion, Death and Resurrection as I associate problems as my Good Friday and learning to accept God’s will as my resurrection.
Likewise, through the silent retreat, the Holy Mass has become personal to me. As the priest raises the Host with his hands, I too elevate my loved ones and thank God for His blessings. As he lifts the chalice with wine that changes to Christ’s blood, I immerse our spiritual, emotional, mental, physical and even financial illnesses to Him for healing.
The spiritual exercises are still fresh to me. I pray that amidst noise in my world, I will remember the importance of silence and the bible verses that I read will not be just a combination of letters in the alphabet but instead be applied in my daily life. As Mother Teresa once said, “God speaks in the silence of the heart. Listening is the beginning of prayer.”
Written By: Edna Sebolino, 3rd placer in PBS’ Holy Week Essay Writing Contest

I am a Bible Ambassador because I believe that the Bible can help people a lot. And knowing the Bible, people come in touch with the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Most Rev. Broderick Pabillo, D.D.Apostolic Administrator, Achdiocese of Manila

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Ptra. Dolores "Loy" FulgencioAnnual PBS Member

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Ptra. Nina VergaraAnnual PBS Member

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Ptr. Eric BulanteChurch Pastor, Shepherd's Church in Hills of Zion, Talim Island (AACP beneficiary)

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It has well-equipped leaders who facilitate trainings and workshops.
Its mission to reach out to Filipinos using God’s Word is fulfilled through its works.”

Miriam del RosarioExecutive director at The Birthright Educators Foundation

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Knowing Matthew 10:32-33, I read and study the Bible so that I will not be dismayed when the Lord Jesus Christ comes. Life is too short compared with the promise of eternal life in God’s Kingdom.”

Jorge BianesLocal Church Elder at LJOR Unified Commonwealth

I think this is very helpful to every readers. The word of the Lord are the food of our soul which we always need every minute of our life. I dont often read the Bible but everytime i open it, God was always like in front of me and speaking as what is something i'm just needing to hear. He speaks to me and i can feel it. A million thanks to You my Lord.

CrisTin Bocar AtregenioHousewife, Stay-at-home parent

I love the ministry of the Philippine Bible Society in sharing the Word to the world. God bless PBS!

Ganni BanzueloScripture Marketing Officer at Philippine Bible Society