Every Landings run concludes with a retreat that ends with Mass. That Mass which we celebrate always turns out to be a powerful experience. Why? After all, it’s a normal Sunday Mass celebrated like anywhere else in our universal Church.
The difference is the special congregation that makes this Mass a spiritual meeting point for many of us journeying in our search “to return to Church”. For some of us, this is the first Mass that we attend after many years. For most of us, this is a rare Mass where we feel touched, joyful and loved – everything of what Mass is supposed to be.
This is when we celebrate our arrival home. It climaxes a long journey that began with a small step filled with uncertainty, unsure if we will ever find God in our life and filled with vagueness, uncertain of what we will find at all.
At this Mass, we feel a liberation, our once heavy life lifted joyfully up. We feel unconditionally welcomed and accepted. We feel good for being who we are, unjudged, encouraged and strengthened. We experience an overwhelming sense of being loved by God and those around us. We feel God affirming us.
This always turns out to be a special Mass because in truth, this Mass is celebrated specially for us. Dedicated to ‘me’, once a lost child of God. ‘I’ feel good. ‘I’ feel renewed. ‘I’ feel ready to take my next step in faith, and to do things ‘I’ never thought ‘I’ could. This is affirmation, or the result of spiritual affirmation.
Spiritual affirmation is a powerful tool. Affirmation is not a long-winded essay of thanks. Affirmation expresses gratitude for who a person truly is. It often highlights goodness and qualities that the person may not realise he or she possess. It gives a ‘feel good’ glow to another’s life, adding self-confidence to take the next step.
At Landings we share our faith stories. Often they are testimonies of God being active in our personal lives. Often too, they are stories of our brokenness: Of how when broken by the stress of our worldly life, we fill ourselves with doubts about true love… of how beneath the rubble of our brokenness, we cannot find strength… of how in between the cracks, we try to get a glimpse of God… and of how when on our own, inevitably we fail.
At Landings, we also practise spiritual affirmations. Affirmations restore us back to our feet and readies our feet to confidently march on in faith. When we point to the goodness of the other, our appreciation brings comfort and healing. When we highlight the unique quality in the other, our perception gives encouragement and courage.
Spiritual affirmations bring out our true worth, hidden and pecked down because the world measures our worth on a different scale. But in truth, all of us are worth our weight in graces. In us, through our lives, we possess a power to transform another by being a positive impact on others. Spiritual affirmations bring out this awareness.
God is the source of all affirmations but He needs us to be His hands and feet, as well as His voice.
One of the most amazing wonders of an active faith life is to find and feel God acting through us to touch the lives of others. That in itself is affirming and when we go on to affirm others through our actions and words, we powerfully bring the presence of God into their lives.
This is an awe-inspiring and humbling privilege. When we are affirmed, and when we go on to affirm others, we feel this presence of God in that moment. God wants us to feel good about ourselves and in affirmations we feel connected to God. Through affirmations, we become transmitters of God’s Love. We gain spiritual confidence to do God’s work.
Spiritual affirmations are powerful tools. It brings to surface our true worth in God’s eyes. Its fires up who we truly are; the presence of God to each other. When we affirm one another, it is God we hear. When we are touched, it is He who touched us.
May we then continue to bring affirmations to one another, to those we meet on our journey of faith, and those we meet outside of that journey, that they too, may experience the power of our God through us.
Help us bring our away Catholics back to Church. You can share in this mission simply by following us our Facebook Page: Landings – Singapore, on Instagram: @landings.sg or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Every connection matters!
It’s a small effort to make to bring a soul back to God!