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Behold Your Mother
Newsletter of the Brothers of the Beloved Disciple

Number 40: April 2008
Moderator: Fr. George T. Montague, S.M.
Assistant Moderator: Fr. Robert Hogan, B.B.D.
Rev. Joseph Mary Marshall, S.M. (Pastor) Rev. Will Combs, B.B.D., (Parochial Vicar)
1701 Alametos, San Antonio, TX 78201
(210) 734-6727
Episcopal Advisor: Most Rev. Thomas J. Flanagan, D.D.

A Sleeping Giant Awakes to Jesus’ Easter Gift: Reconciliation

He breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained” (John 20:22-23)

“I sit there for an hour and maybe two or three come.”

The priest who spoke was pastor of one of the San Antonio churches. Sitting at our table, he was rather matter of fact about the few penitents in his parish who avail themselves of confession on Saturday afternoons, but then he launched into an attack on the secularization of society, its loss of the sense of God and oblivion of self-scrutiny.

Confession with Fr. Will

“You need to preach confession,” another priest offered. “And promote retreats with your people,” another added.

That has made the difference at St. Mary Magdalen. Our problem is not the vacant confessional. It’s the long lines of penitents who want the sacramental assurance of God’s forgiveness. And we are not alone. Other parishes are wrestling with the problem of how to cope with the increasing number who come for confession, some of whom are left unabsolved as the priest has to leave the confessional to preside at the Eucharist.

To what do we attribute this surge? Primarily to the number of retreats we offer our people during the year. The “Men in Christ” (Hombres en Cristo), sixty strong round up friends and acquaintances for a retreat twice a year, and the “Women in Christ” do the same. Confession/Reconciliation is part of the retreat, and some who come have been away ten or twenty years. Then there are the ACTS retreats—one annually for men, one for women. Many have had profound conversions during these retreats that set them on a journey to deeper union with Christ and service to his people. Periodic confession becomes a pattern in their lives.

It was on Easter Sunday that Jesus breathed on his disciples and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them. Whose sins you retain are retained” (John 20-22-23). We are in the Easter season now, and many have profited by Lent and Holy Week to be refreshed and cleansed by this wonderful sacrament. But it isn’t meant just for the season. Jesus’ cleansing and refreshing is available year round, for we are people of the resurrection year round!


Confirmation Life in the Spirit Seminar
Awakens Youth and Adults to the Wonders of the Holy Spirit

Life in the Spirit Seminar for Youth

Confirmandi, parents and sponsors share during the Life in the Spirit seminar preparing them for the Sacrament of

The Sacrament of Confirmation always produces an effect, but how effective it is depends a lot on how well disposed the receiver is. One of the services the charismatic renewal has given to the Church in the San Antonio Archdiocese is a Life in the Spirit Seminar for teens, their parents and sponsors preparing for Confirmation. Above you can see the hall filled with youth and adults participating in the pre-confirmation Life in the Spirit seminar at St. Mary Magdalen. February 23.

The Brothers of the Beloved Disciple have also assisted at other such seminars. Among the presenters are young people themselves, like Destiny Morales, who shared her powerful testimony with the group above.


Father Bob Receives
Catholic School Leadership Award

Fr. bob Receives School Award

At its annual gala celebration, the Schools Office of the Archdiocese of San Antonio bestowed on Fr.Bob Hogan (center) the Catholic Schools Leadership award for the outstanding work he did while pastor of St. Mary Magdalen in turning the school around from sinking to sailing. We invite our readers to join in the applause.

Young Adults Meet Regularly

Young Adults

Pictured above are the Young Adults who meet regularly in our living room to share their faith.

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Victor Tello with painting

Victor Tello, one of the Men in Christ, displays a painting he made of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Men in Christ Continue Sharing Faith
and Evangelizing Others

Men in Christ

Some 60 men meet every Saturday morning to pray and share reflections on the Sunday readings. They also organize a retreat for men every spring and fall and minister during the annual ACTS retreat. Significant conversions have happened through their ministry.

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Regional Charismatic Conference to be Held at St. Mary Magdalen March 7-9

As we go to press, the parish is planning on welcoming the annual Regional Charismatic Conference. For the past several years it has met at the downtown Convention Center, but expenses there have made it increasingly difficult to support that venue. For the first time, St. Mary Magdalen parish will be the venue on Friday evening March 7 and all day Saturday, March 8. Among the speakers are Sister Nancy Kellar, former chair of the International Charismatic Office in Rome, Fr. Einer Ochoa for the Hispanics track, and Fathers Bob Hogan and George Montague for the English track. Two new temporary parking lots will be opened for the event, which will attract people State-wide.


Father George’s New Book Snapped Up
by Eager Readers

In late February Word Among Us Press released Father

Spirit Home

George’s latest book, Holy Spirit, Make Your Home in Me: Biblical Meditations on Receiving the Gift of the Spirit. It is 26 short meditations combining personal stories with easy access to biblical scholarship and a prayer at the end of each chapter. Endorsed on the back cover by Bishop Sam Jacobs, Ralph Martin and Jesuit professor at Creighton University Fr. Dennis Hamm, it has received widespread accolades and radio interviews from New York to Seattle. It is sold in Catholic bookstores nationwide, and, judging from local response, it is becoming as popular as was his earlier book, Riding the Wind. Father George has had trouble keeping up with the demand for copies, having sold some 300 copies as soon as they were available. One reader said your should have tissue at hand when you read it! It’s available at your local Catholic bookstore or directly from Fr. George at $12.95 (plus $2 shipping).
Go to books page for more information.


Vocations to the BBD?

Paul Holub

While we continue our ministries, we continue to pray for more vocations to the Brothers of the Beloved Disciple. Above Paul Holub of A & M University visited us for a week-end at New Year’s. We are processing other inquiries at this time, and ask your prayers that others will catch the fire we have.


Robert Fontana at Parish Mission
Robert Fontana (left) from Seattle gave our parish mission in English and
José and Evelyn Ramos from San Antonio gave the one in Spanish.


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Date last modified: December 4, 2008

For more information contact:
George T. Montague, S.M.
1701 Alametos San Antonio, TX 78201-3500
Phone 210-734-6727 FAX 210-738-0698