Stories of Giving
Mercy by the Sea welcomes all to a place of quiet to hear one's still inner voice and explore a new way of being. Our participants share with us their gratitude and call to assure that all have the ability to come regardless of their financial situation.
Assuring Mercy Is Open to All
Over five years ago, I discovered an invitation to join Mercy by the Sea’s School of Spirituality. The description for this opportunity welcomed me to seek and discover a deeper meaning of the wisdom shared through the Old and New Testaments — and to reflect upon how the ancient stories of others have and continue to guide me during my own life journey. In that moment, I felt feelings of such excitement and joy paired with a sense of hope and relief. The message I received was that this host, this place to seek and discover, would embrace and empower my spiritual yearnings in all forms. This memory triggers a feeling of “homecoming” as I recognize it as being a gift of an awakening, a sort of taking a turn in a direction of self-discovery and healing while being embraced by God. After completing the two years of the School of Spirituality, I moved into the Spiritual Direction Practicum for two additional years.
The Practicum’s invitations to read assigned books containing spiritual wisdom shared by relatable modern authors, to write weekly self-reflections, to share within a safe space of the deepest despairs and joys of my and colleagues’ lives, and to welcome the vulnerability of directees to be open to a loving God’s presence, provided me with a consistent healing that has been life changing. As a human being who has been given this current life upon Earth, as a wife, mother to two young children, a daughter, a friend, and stranger to many, I understand that our shared world is shifting into a mystery of challenging transition and transformation. But, I sense an underlying consistency in the message I receive through my own space and time with God:
Creation encourages us to seek and discover the love and beauty of God within and along our relatable and differing moments of our individual journeys. These invitations are not limited. We don’t have to seek outward towards a limiting Universe of a dark abyss of unreachable mystery. God’s presence is in the here and now. Our individual learning styles, languages in all forms, and discoveries connecting us to God are within our unique designs.
Some of the most important questions I have discovered as being the most challenging include: “How do I define God?”, “How do I recognize God throughout my days?” and “What does God look like to me?” Because of such questions, my moments within days have shifted into a more respectful, loving and nurturing dimension. A place that welcomes the infinite mystery of all creation.
I imagine the people of our shared world having a place to reflect, to speak, to be heard, and discover the consistencies that God is communicating to us collectively through our own individual languages. I once again imagine that collection of unique languages blending into one unitive, well-understood message… “You are loved.”
I look forward to witnessing others whose lives are transformed through the plentiful programs at Mercy by the Sea. I am confident my ongoing support will carry on the mercy-filled difference that these programs make within others’ lives.
As soon as I walk in the front door, I am greeted by friends with a smile and a big hug, which fills me with joy and makes me feel as if I am home again.
Triduum for me is taking the time to be still; to soak up the quiet; to be surrounded by the beauty of nature; to meditate once more on the life of Jesus and to ponder how this journey is reflected in my life.
The time with others in silence creates a bond of unity among us; we are pilgrims on a journey. And when we walk from darkness into light at the Easter Vigil, the chorus of Alleluias makes real that "Jesus is alive. He is risen as He said."
I am so grateful for Mercy by the Sea and for all who make my time so special. I believe very strongly in committing my financial support and prayers to this place of holy ground and to the mission of Mercy by the Sea.
I have come to Mercy by the Sea for many years to experience this love of Jesus and let it pour out of my own life to others as a chaplain to the sick and homebound.