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Dr Nigel Joel Gonsalves, will be available at our Medical Centre for Physiotherapy on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5.30 to 7 p.m. ______________________

Musicians and Guitarists are requested to help with the Cantors. Those willing, kindly give your names at the Parish Office. Thanks in advance for your generosity. _________________________________

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St. Peter’s Charismatic Prayer Group

Introduction to the Holy Spirit

The 1970’s was a time of great enthusiasm in the Spirit. There was excitement in the air. A revival was sweeping through the Catholic Church, through a new awareness of and openness to the once forgotten and now newly found third person of the Blessed Trinity. As Isaiah would say: “Behold I do a new thing, do you not perceive it?” (Is.43:19)

A great desire to pray, to praise and worship with others, to study and read the Word of God; became the first signs and fruits of such an experience. Building Christian Community by sharing one’s concerns, by praying for one another and for healing, followed. One could not stop talking about the Lord, His Spirit and the gift of tongues. There was a new buoyancy and exuberance in living the Christian life. The gift of Prophecy was seriously taken to heart and obeyed. It was also a time of learning to understand this new method of prayer and its place in Catholic Worship. From those beginnings, St. Peter’s Prayer Group evolved to what it is today.

The Prayer Group began in January 1977, as a result of the 1976 Charismatic Convention (held on the grounds of St. Peter’s) under the leadership of Anthony Lobo, with Fr. Douglas Rowe as spiritual director.

TIMINGS

PRAYER MEETINGS

Mon. 7:30p.m. – 9:00p.m.

Mini Hall, St. Peter’s Church.

SENIOR CITIZENS CELL

Wed. 10:30a.m. – 12:00 noon

Rebello House, Hill Road

 Brief History of the prayer group

FIRST PHASE (1977 – 1988)

The prayer group experienced a growth in numbers through regular Life in the Spirit Seminars, Growth Seminars, Charismatic Missions, Pentecostal Novenas and by making themselves available to others, in prayer and service.

SECOND PHASE (1988 – 1998)

During this time, Arvinda Barboza took the group through a phase of deepening and maturity in its spiritual growth. Members grew in their prayer life, in reading and studying the Scriptures and in their commitment to the Lord and to the Parish.

THIRD PHASE (1998 – till date)

During this phase, Christina Lobo lead the group into building the Kingdom through the many ministries and outreach programmes that are still operating today. Lynette Dias the present leader and an admirable organizer, led the group into its Silver Jubilee Celebrations in 2002, with a glorious Eucharistic Celebration in January, “Youth Awakening 2002” and a Holiness Retreat preached by the world renowned Fr.Tom Forrest C.Ss.R. were some of the highlights.

Other programmes preceded and followed, such as:-

Parish Open Retreat of 1996 at which more than 700 people were touched, healed and changed as they renewed their commitment to Jesus.

3 Lite Nite charity dinner at which approx. Rs.3 lakhs were collected for 3 social projects.

Evangelization retreat conducted by Fritz Mascarenhas and Mae Britto.

The reason for its existence

The prayer group exists in order to evangelize those who have lost hope, to re-evangelize ourselves and to challenge one another to discipleship. Hence we rely on God the Holy Spirit to empower and enable us to live a Spirit-filled life. The key therefore is THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, the soaking or plunging into the Life of the Spirit, a basic and crucial requirement, in accordance with Scripture and Church documents.

YOU ARE INVITED to experience and live this Life in the Spirit

The prayer meeting is held on Mondays from 7.30pm until 9.00pm at the Mini Hall, St. Peter’s Church. At present there are approximately 100 members listed. The prayer meeting begins with 40 minutes of Praise and Worship followed by a scriptural teaching. The gifts that are regularly manifested are: Teaching and Exhortation, Prophecy, Tongues, Visions, Inner Healing and Counselling, Deliverance, Physical Healing.

The prayer group receives its direction from the Bombay Service Team of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal whose Chairperson is Luz Maria Engineer, under the guidance of Bishop Bosco D’Penha.

For the seniors who are unable to attend the Monday evening meeting, we have a senior citizen cell which meets on Wednesday mornings from 10.30 – 12.00 at Rebello House, Hill Road to share the Word together.

MINISTRIES OF THE PRAYER GROUP

Prayer Meeting Ministries:

Praise and Worship – Members in rotation lead the group into vibrant praise and deeper worship, preparing hearts to be receptive to the Word of God.

Music – Members support the praise and worship leader in song and instrumental music.

Teaching – Some gifted with good teaching abilities and trained through the Ministry of the Word, Bible College, Scripture Ventures, break the Word of God with depth, conviction and challenge.

Service – Take care of the general arrangements of the Hall and sound system, at prayer Group Programmes and Outreaches, their services are used by virtually every other ministry.

Library – Members supervise the library filled with good Catholic books on different topics Promotion and distribution of Charisindia, Catholic periodicals, Bibles etc.

Intercession – Approx. 40 members meet on Wednesday evenings from 8pm to 9pm to pray for the needs of the Prayer Group, Parish and the Church in Mumbai and India.

Soaking Prayer – Individual needs and requests are collated and ‘soaked’ in prayer each month by 20-25 committed members.

Outreach Ministries:

Inner Healing Retreats – conducted every 6-8 weeks by Anthony Lobo and Team of 6.

Counselling/Healing – Every Tuesday morning from 10.00 to 12.30 in the Mini Hall, barring public holidays. 6 members involved.

Pro-Life – The aim of this ministry is to promote respect for life right from conception to its natural end. This includes the unborn child, the sick, elderly, handicapped; all of whom have a right to a full and fruitful life. Apart from raising funds and supporting institutions dealing with abandoned babies, members have helped shelter battered women, rehabilitate unwed mothers and given un-wanted babies in adoption. We have also conducted programmes for the Adivasi community, NFP and other programmes in the parish and created awareness of the importance of life. Organised a jumble sale in the parish in Nov 2005 and raised Rs. 16,000/- earmarked for the pro life ministry.

Caring/Sharing/Visiting – The members visit and pray with the sick, help with hospital rosters, care for the elderly which range from providing a meal to helping with various chores. Have also helped families with medical aid, rations and helped restore a dilapidated house.

Social Concern – We have helped raise Sabha membership, collaborated with them, helping with election duty, motivating citizens to vote. Some are involved with ALM’s, AGNI and other secular movements. 3 members spearhead these activities.

Social Work – Apart from medical, educational and other assistance given to individuals in need, the prayer group has been involved each year with fund raising for noteworthy projects.(ASEEMA and REAP – Rs. 50000 each – literacy projects) The year of the earthquake, a 15 tonne truck load of supplies was sent to a Jesuit center in Gujarat and raised 3 lakhs for three deserving projects – rural, urban and missionary. Every month we support a food programme (youth for youth) and have sponsored Mahila Mandals.

Faith Formation:

R.C.I.A. – This is the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults, leading candidates to Baptism. Our member’s co-ordinate and help weekly at the Deanery Centre at St. Peter’s. So far 3 sponsors and 5 God-parents have been from our group.

Jesus Club/Children – over the years prayer group members have been instrumental in building up the Jesus Club and at present 5 members are actively involved. We have conducted children’s camps and VBJ programmes.

Parish Involvement – Through Liturgical committees, Retreats for the Parish Lenten programmes, Conducting Services for Pentecost, Outreaches for the Parish preached by Fr. Rufus Pereira, Mr. Trevor Lewis – conducted and coordinated by the Prayer Group, Holy Hours etc.

Representative: Doris Cardoz (9619995256)

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