Good News from Season Two
of ARISE in the Diocese of Stockton

The following is a note from one of the facilitators at Church of the Presentation in Stockton, CA. Rio Las Palmas is an assisted living facility and some of the seniors participate in an ARISE group.

    Today, we met at Rio Las Palmes for our second session. God is transforming hearts as we continue our Lenten Journey. Everyone looks forward to meet again to experience Jesus' presence among us as we share our faith stories, the word, and reflections. Jesus has definitely written his name in the palm of our hand and embraced us with love. God continues to nourish our group, as we are challenged to step out in faith and hear His voice. We are His beloved. So many blessings are being poured out to us all. Everyone is grateful for ARISE at Rio.

    We welcomed "Jane," who resides at Rio and is not Catholic. Jane was very comfortable in sharing with us as we reflected on the word and shared stories. Jane shared a beautiful healing faith story with us that emotionally moving us all. We invited her to return next week.
The Diocesan Coordinator for ARISE, Sr. Barbara Thiella, asked ARISE leaders to share "best practices" from the Latino community. The first response she received comes from Sacred Heart Parish in Patterson.
    1) Stress that the programs is as much theirs as anyone else's, as this is a parishioner ministry. At every opportunity, ask for their comments, view point, suggestions etc.
    2) Whenever possible, relate topics to the traditional beliefs of our ancestors. Be prepared to answer why the church, at times, does not follow Spanish tradition.
    3) Keep in mind how respect is necessary and is so much part of the process. Respect for the house meeting and for the host who kindly invites us into his/her home.
    4) Husbands who may be giving their wives a hard time about attending, especially because there is not a man of the cloth, or nun facilitating, should be invited and encouraged to attend one meeting then they can make a decision for themselves.
    5) Explain that this is not a traditional bible study program.

    Sister Barbara I personally believe that part of our success is due to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in our “in house” training program which we developed in English then translated into Spanish. I have will share a copy if anyone is interested.

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