This trust in the Spirit, extended by Jean, was pure gift
After a few years of searching for a way to follow Jesus we encountered Jean at Faith and Sharing Retreats in Edmonton, AB in 1971 and ‘72. On these occasions, having shared with Jean, our desire of wanting to follow Jesus and being listened to, he encouraged us, saying “I trust the spirit within you both, you can trust yourselves”. He also counselled us to pray and become close to somebody who lived on the margins.
After these retreats we began to explore the possibility of L’Arche and eventually after prayer and sharing with friends, we welcomed a man with an intellectual disability to live with us.
It was the experience of living with this person, prayer and counsel from wise friends that led us to L’Arche, with formation in an existing L’Arche community, Maryfarm, Alexandria, ON and then to the foundation of L’Arche in Calgary, AB in August of 1973.
We were anxious when we sold our home and set out for Maryfarm: Was this the right decision we were making? – yet we were compelled by the desire to follow Jesus. In the end we agreed… this is what we must do!
This trust in the Spirit, extended by Jean, was pure gift and exactly what we needed to take the leap. After these 45 years we remain deeply grateful for the presence of L’Arche in our lives.
Thank-you Jean & Happy 90th!
Jo & Pat