Testimony: God can work wonders with our youth. Kevin Oliveira testifies how a retreat changed his life and the lives of other confirmation candidates.

People say the youth are attached to their phones. It is true, but as part of our Confirmation process we had to forcefully do a digital detox in the form of a retreat. 25 confirmation candidates and 4 animators attended a two-day retreat at Don Bosco, Lonavala.

For this Retreat, we had to leave aside everything and get more close to God. This is exactly what we experienced in the span of two days, 29th and the 30th October. It was an awesome feeling to live without our present ruler, our phones, but it was also a bittersweet experience to live without a gadget. So, we turned ourselves to do what God had called us to do. I would like to say that we learned a lot on this retreat.

Our lifeguard on this sailing boat was Fr. McEnroe Lopes and Fr. Valerian Pereira. They made it an enjoyable and unforgettable retreat. Fr. McEnroe taught us that we should take time to prepare ourselves before accepting our faith. To understand it he told us to write ‘Our Bestseller’ that is, sum up our past, present and future in few pages. His sessions were quite interesting and after each lesson, there was a certain message that we had to understand. One of the most beautiful lessons was that God doesn’t make junk. We come in to this world for a purpose (GOD’S MISSION) and we need to do what he commands us.

The best part of the retreat was when we had to spend few moments in silence. This is when I truly met God and found an inner voice pouring out to me (speaking to me) during the activity.

Well at that moment, it occurred to me that we always keep complaining that ‘God doesn’t listen to us’. Well, my question is “How often or how much time do you spend listening to him?” We are so busy with our lives that we fail to realise that God is with us everywhere, even in silence that is how I experienced Him. I literally found God in the silence of my heart. If you try, you can find him too.

Lastly, I would like to thank Fr. Allwyn for making this possible for the Confirmandi. For organising a wonderful retreat where we experienced God presence. I would like to conclude saying, ‘God is there, even in the silence’. It’s only if we take the initiative to open our hearts and let him in.

By Kevin Oliveira, 15