From Brokenness to Blessing: A Journey of Forgiveness and Faith

I was born in a Christian family. My dad was Anglican and my mum Catholic. Both were equally
staunch in their beliefs. My mother was insistent in having us baptized and was very diligent in
raising us in the faith, ensuring we go for daily mass and sending us for retreats during summer
vacations. Though it planted a seed of knowing God in a deep way, when I came to college many
things changed. I lost my closeness to Jesus and the earlier sincerity in the small and simple things of
life seemed unimportant. I began questioning the practice of traditional prayers. I stopped going to
church. During my second year I fell in love with a girl. It seemed most appropriate since it seemed
that everyone else had a girlfriend. Over time I was quite sure she would be the one I would marry. I
changed the course of my career, opting for a post-graduation that I may remain with her. A year
later, my world crashed when I discovered that she had become friendly with another classmate. I
was shattered and unable to see a future. My grief turned into anger. I was determined to prove to
this girl that I could outshine her during the rest of the course. I was filled with unforgiveness and
hatred. I was so disturbed I realized I must go for the retreat and try to find some peace. During the
retreat I developed high fever. During the Eucharistic adoration where special prayers were offered
for the healing of inner wounds, the priest who leading the service Fr Augustine Vallooran mentioned
my name and gave a message to forgive and see how God works. It was hard. I nevertheless prayed
for the unforgiveness and hate to be removed. As soon as I did this, I could feel a cool sensation over
my body. I realised I had received the grace to completely forgive the girl and the boy whom she was
in love with.
There began my journey with the Lord and ever since He has been beside me through some very
trying times. I used to get seizures every seventh day, 10-15 times. During those times I could
experience the Lord’s presence sustaining me. Years later, my family faced a challenge when my dad
was diagnosed with a brain degenerative disease. Despite his struggles, for the first time he desired
to make a retreat and was so involved in the Mass and Eucharistic Adoration services.
The greatest blessing has been the opportunity to be involved in the youth ministry at Divine Retreat
Centre. Thousands of youths came seeking God. I see in them a reflection of me, wanting to just
touch the fringe of His garment and be healed. I am so grateful that God has allowed me to work
with the gospel channel Goodness TV, though I have absolutely no training in this field. Here I find
the meaning of my life. I am grateful for how God has used my experiences of joy and pain, of
seeking and finding, to help journey with others to live beholding His glory.
My ministry with the youth, gave me the opportunity to see how my life would have turned around if
God had come into my life and how important it is for this present generation to encounter Christ
and if I can be just a cog in God’s plan I would not mind doing so. While working in the media
ministry one key element of what God wants from me is just my readiness and willingness to spread
God’s word which I was ready to do, and He did the rest. He gave me some wonderful mentors who
also taught me how to use my asset in the ministry rather than diversify and try to learn new skills
and not apply it.
At present I am working in a company called Crayon Software Experts Private Limited and based out
of Bangalore. God has blessed me with this job and an amazing fiancée which I think is really God’s
blessing and grace.

Marcus Silus Sam,

By His Name I am Healed: A Testimony of Faith and Deliverance

I am a housewife and a mother of two kids. In 2017 I suffered from severe anxiety disorder, palpitations, sleepless nights and panic attack. It just happened without any reason. I consulted two doctors who were not sure of what it was and did not given me any medicines. Then I attended my first retreat at Divine Retreat Centre in July 2017.

After attending the retreat, I continued reciting the Word given by Fr Augustine Vallooran, “But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you…” (Is 43: 1-7) and prayed with praising and thanking the Lord. This is my second and thanksgiving retreat at DRC. The Word of God healed me and delivered me. I am enjoying peace in my mind and heart. I praise and thank God.

Sharon Wilson