At Lenten holy hour, Bishop calls for faithful to consecrate themselves to Jesus

      ST. JOHN | “Faith is first and foremost a personal, intimate encounter with Jesus,” Bishop Robert J. McClory told his flock on Feb. 25 as he drew them close at the first of five weekly Lenten retreats in the Diocese of Gary. “It is having an experience of his closeness, his friendship and his love. It is in this way that we learn to know him even better and to love him and follow him even more and more.”

      Following the theme, “Encounter. Grow. Witness.,” Bishop McClory devoted much of his Lenten reflection to establishing the importance of each person’s personal invitation from Jesus Christ to not just know about him, but to dedicate their life totally to him.

      “It is more than knowing about Jesus. . .it’s an encounter that brings with it a response, and that response makes all the difference,” the bishop said at St. John the Evangelist.

      More than 150 people attended the worship service in person, while at least 300 more watched the livestream broadcast of the Expositon of the Eucharist, a Gospel reading and reflection by the bishop, silent prayer and sacred music performed by the SJE Praise Band.

      Displaying one of the holy cards distributed at the 2016 funeral of his mother, Ann Cecilia McClory, the bishop noted that the picture on the front was of the Sacred Heart, while the back contained an Act of Consecration to the Divine Heart of Jesus.

      Noting that some people who received one of the holy cards, “Read the prayer every day and their lives have been renewed and transformed,” the bishop compared a consecration to “dedicating yourself to that which is holy. It’s a response to an encounter with Jesus.

Read the full story in the March 7 edition of the Northwest Indiana Catholic.

      Remaining Lenten Retreats with Bishop Robert J. McClory will be held at 7 p.m. Thursdays, including March 4 at Queen of All Saints, Michigan City; March 11 at St. Michael the Archangel, Schererville; March 18 at St. Patrick, Chesterton; and March 25 at St. Paul, Valparaiso. Check with the individual parish on whether registration is required, or watch the livestream at the Diocese of Gary’s YouTube channel.