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The following report comes to us from team leader Phil with our team in downtown Riverside, CA:
This past weekend, we evangelized at the Festival of Lights outside the historic Mission Inn Hotel. We call this our “Superbowl” of sorts due to the vast crowds that come to see the Christmas lights and walk around the Mission Inn Hotel (it’s almost a non-stop dream come true for us). Although the City of Riverside shut down all food booths and other activities around the Mission Inn Hotel for the Festival of Lights (again this year due to fear of the virus), we still had PLENTY of foot traffic. We gave out hundreds of rosaries, as well as numerous Miraculous Medals, holy cards, pamphlets, scapulars and other medals…and of course had numerous conversations about the faith.
One memorable encounter was with a lady who had lost her son last year due to suicide and didn’t understand why a Catholic friend kept having masses said for his soul as she thought he was in Heaven. Her best understanding after we talked to her and gave her a pamphlet from the Marian Fathers on the Catholic teaching on suicide and Purgatory is that “it’s sorta like a carwash before getting into Heaven.”
Surprisingly, at least four different sets of Protestants that had some bones to pick with the Catholic Church stopped by and we did our best to engage. Most of them took pamphlets explaining the faith. Many people really liked the new Ticket to Heaven pamphlet and the sober reminder that “Life is short and eternity is forever!”…and that we better get prepared.
Praised be Jesus Christ!