Chapter two of Acts in the New Testament describes the basis of the Pentecostal Movement. The section describes a scene when the apostles are being visited by the Holy Spirit.
It reads, “And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance (Acts 2:4).”
The Catholic Charismatic weekend retreat this weekend in Clovis is intended to help attendees recreate the Pentecostal experience for themselves through prayer, said Grable Encinias, leader of the local Catholic Charismatic prayer group planning the event.
“The event is a baptism in the Holy Spirit,” he said.
Encinias explained that lay people, like him, can also be leaders in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal movement within the Catholic church.
Encinias said the “number one reason” to come to the retreat is “to get closer to God, to help find his purpose in life for you.”
Father Art Cooney and Sister Martha Jean McGarry will be speakers at the event, according to a release from the group.
Encinias said the children and youth activities will also take place at the retreat. All meals for the weekend are included for free, he said.
Father Daniel Balizan began the Catholic Charismatic retreat weekends in Clovis 10 years ago. He used to have a parish in Clovis, buy has since moved to Albuquerque.
Balizan will be the M.C. of the event.
He said he began the retreats here because there was little offered in the area.
“The southeastern and mideastern New Mexico people are deprived of a lot of spiritual activities,” Balizan said. “I did it in particular because a lot of retreats and conferences take place in the Albuquerque area.”
He said the theme of the retreat is to “give thanks to the Lord — thanking him of the awesomeness of his blessing.”
Encinias said they have sent mailers to over 2,000 people and would like to invite the public to attend the event.
“Our hope and our desire is always that those who come to the retreat come with an open heart and an open mind for whatever the Lord wishes to grace them with,” said Balizan.