This year’s Home of the Mother Summer Encounter for High School girls took place in the mountains of North Carolina, just north of Asheville. A total of 32 girls and 6 Sisters spent the week at Star Mountain and took day trips to nearby hiking paths and rivers. The theme for the week, given by our founder, Fr. Rafael, for the girls’ camp, was “You are Mine. You cannot deny me anything.” This phrase can seem daunting at first, but in the talks by the Sisters, the meditations before the Blessed Sacrament, and the homilies from Daily Mass, Jesus helped the girls understand what it means to belong to Him. We have been created by God and He has bought us by his blood with His sacrifice on the cross. Seeing the grandeur of the North Carolina mountains elevated our hearts to contemplate the beauty of God’s creation and helped us have a greater spirit of gratitude towards our God and Creator.
We asked the Sacred Heart of Jesus to be our guide and strength, and the lyrics of this year’s theme song “Sacred Heart of Jesus, Your Heart is like a fire...!” echoed throughout the mountains.
During one of the days of camp, we also lent a helping hand to an elderly gentleman and cleaned out two greenhouses on his property. This act of service done by the girls gave them a great satisfaction and the realization that joy comes from giving with a cheerful heart.
The long hike this year was to a place called Grassy Ridge Bald. This hike was a favorite and the views were unforgettable. Hopefully these hikes remind us of the earthly pilgrimage we’re on and that, though it can be tough at times, trusting in the Sacred Heart of Jesus will help us make it to our true homeland: Heaven!