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Students find spiritual relief at Campus Ministry retreat

On Feb. 8 and 9, a group of Seton Hall students traveled to a campground an hour away for the annual Fan Into Flame Retreat.

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Eliezer DeJesus, a sophomore accounting major and one of the leaders of the retreat, said the purpose of the retreat was to invite students to learn more about the Holy Spirit in a more personal way.

DeJesus said he chose to lead the retreat because he felt God was calling him to pour out his heart in service. He said this was his third Fan Into Flame retreat and it always happens on either the first or second weekend of February.

DeJesus explained that the weekend leads up to a prayer meeting where students pray over each other and are baptized in the Holy Spirit.

Nate Valyo, a sophomore economics and informational technology major, said this was his first Fan Into Flame retreat, which he heard about through the Campus Ministry and a few friends.

“I figured I’d be with a lot of my friends, but also I’ve had very good experiences on retreats, and I was really looking forward to just getting off campus for a little bit,” Valyo said. Valyo said he would go on the retreat again, and would be open to taking more of a leadership role the next time.

Matheus Leguisamo, a sophomore diplomacy and international relations major, also said this was his first Fan Into Flame retreat, about which he learned through a friend. Leguisamo said he attended because of a lot of his friends were going, and he has been to other Catholic retreats, and thought it would be a good weekend of rest.

“The atmosphere was very peaceful, but energetic at the same time,” Leguisamo said. He added that there were people from a variety of faiths in attendance who all found spiritual relief.

Valyo and Leguisamo both said that their favorite part of the retreat was the prayer meeting on Saturday night. Leguisamo said the ones praying over you pray for whatever you ask them to pray for.

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Valyo said the only thing he would change about the retreat would be to include more testimonies from students. Leguisamo said that if he could make one change, he would make the retreat longer than just a weekend.

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DeJesus said he enjoyed the anticipation before the retreat and enjoyed hearing students’ stories and feedback after the retreat.

All three students said they encourage students to reach out to Campus Ministry if they would like more information or to get involved with activities and retreats like Fan Into Flame. “Whether it is planning, or whether it is attending it, I’d definitely 100 percent do it again,” DeJesus said.

Veronica Gaspa can be reached at veronica.gaspa@student.shu.edu

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