Categories: AnnouncementsPublished On: October 24th, 2022525 words16 min read

Rice Lake Parishioners Host Welcome Weekend Retreat

On October 1-2 and October 8-9 the Four Parish, One Faith Catholic Community, consisting of Holy Trinity (Haugen), Our Lady of Lourdes (Dobie), St. John the Evangelist (Birchwood) and St. Joseph (Rice Lake), hosted a Welcome Weekend Retreat. The Welcome Weekend is an overnight retreat that is hosted by men and women, separately, of the parishes. The retreat consists of great food, amazing hospitality and fellowship with people in your parish area, and incredible witness talks about how God has transformed and changed the lives of the people we know around us. There were twelve men and seventeen women who spent six-months preparing and hosted the retreat at the Our Lady of Lourdes Parish Center. During those six months of preparation, the teams meet weekly on Sunday evening for two hours each week. During the weekly meetings, they journeyed together, like a pilgrimage, through the Welcome Team Guide which includes reflecting on the Gospels, sharing about generosity, the prayer process, and how to be an effective witness of our Catholic faith.

The Welcome program is owned by Dynamic Catholic and exists to change lives and transform parishes. Taken from the website:, “Most of the people you see every day feel like something is missing in their lives. Welcome is an incredible experience that helps them discover what that something is—and what to do about it. It’s run by parishioners for parishioners, and it’s re-energizing parishes across the country.”

The retreat was an incredible experience for both men and women who attended. The Men’s Welcome Weekend had thirteen men in attendance and the women’s weekend hosted twenty-three. Two major things happened with each of the men and women who attended the retreat weekend. First, they were all transformed. Each of the people who attended had a significant trigger moment on the retreat weekend where they felt the Lord’s presence. Second, the retreat experience used those He (Christ) transformed, through the six-month formation/pilgrimage journey, to breathe new life into the Four-Parishes. The benefits of this retreat are two-fold. The Welcome experience helps to renew our parishes for those who put on the retreat and for those receiving it. It is a process that invites people to receive the Welcome Weekend and then to next “gift” the Welcome Weekend.

As each retreat takes place, a six month formation journey will follow with those who attended the retreat. Each person who attends the retreat is given time to discern if it be God’s will for them to continue through the formation and be a part of the next men’s or women’s team to host the next retreat.

Four-Parishes, One Faith Catholic Community is using Welcome as one way to create a dynamic, full of life, and vibrant community. Our next Welcome Weekends, which are open to adults (18+) in the Four-Parish One Faith Catholic Community to attend, are scheduled for March 25-26 (Men’s Weekend) and April 1-2 (Women’s Weekend). For questions about Welcome contact Director of Evangelization and Discipleship, Roland Flasch a or 715-234-2032.