Fruit from Last Year's Holiday Gift Fair
December 7, 2023
Treasure Hunting on the Street
July 31, 2023
By Becca Dickerson
In my previous experience doing street evangelization as a Protestant, I had participated in a "street church" ministry while living in the UK. We would usually meet for an hour near where we'd be evangelizing and would pray for words, pictures, etc. describing the people who we would and should talk to on the street (i.e. red coat, bike spoke, black umbrella, etc.). We called this "treasure hunting", as we were really going out to seek the treasured souls that God wanted us to speak to. We'd always approach them (which took guts!) and remind them of how much God loves them, sees them, knows and cares for them, etc. We ALWAYS found the people.
After a few outings with our growing team, I decided that I'd like to ask the Lord to show me what treasures to hunt for at the Snacktown Street Fair in Hanover, PA on July 15. So, on my way there, I prayed and asked the Holy Spirit to show me the pictures or words to describe the people. I wrote down about 8 things and also wrote "praying for healing", as I thought we would be praying for the healing of those who stopped by our table.
Firstly, we did a lot of praying for healing during the day: healing of relationships, people who'd been diagnosed with terminal illnesses. They just kept coming.
Secondly, I found the Treasure! One of my words was "salt and pepper beard". I stood waiting in front of our table in the morning and I saw a few men with salt and pepper beards, but then a certain gentleman came by and I just walked out and talked to him. I said, "I know this sounds strange, but I was praying and I felt that I would speak to a man with a salt and pepper beard, and here you are. How are you doing today?" He told me he was a Christian and I asked if he needed prayer, and then I gave him a miraculous medal.
One of the other pictures/words was "woman with large sunglasses". As we were talking with people, I kept my eye out, and then I saw her. I knew immediately she was the one to talk to. I walked over to her and started the same way, "I know this might sound strange, but..." and she proceeded to share with me that she really needed prayer for her boyfriend, Johnny, who did not believe in God. She said she'd been raised in Church, and had attended 12 years of Catholic school, but after everything she tried, he just wouldn't believe. She said, "That is why I know you came over and talked to me today." She came over to our table and grabbed a few things and I said, "I asked someone once what I should do to help those I know need conversion, and he told me to pray the rosary every day for their conversion." I told her to try doing the same for her boyfriend and see what happens. She was elated talking to us and hugged me at the end (incredible!).
One of the last people I encountered from my list was a girl in a graphic tee and bike shorts (that was my picture from prayer!). I went up to her and the man she was walking with and again, started the same, "I know this might sound strange, but..." And she told me that's not strange! I asked her how she was doing and if she needed prayer. She got very serious and said, "I need prayer for my family". I asked her some clarifying questions and she told me she needed prayer specifically for "Mack", a family member. I told her that God loved her, he saw her, he knew her, and knew what she needed, handed them some medals and they went on walking.
I regularly pray for Johnny and Mack now, thinking about how God revealed His treasured souls who He knows, loves, and sees on the street that day.
God’s Whisper & the Eyes of the Precious Blood of Jesus
July 31, 2023
By Connie & Dan Klunk
My husband and I began the day with our holy hour before the Blessed Sacrament. Here are two of the reflections we heard:
- “We are ambassadors for Christ” (2 Cor. 5:20) and we take His place on this earth.“Go out now and take your place” (Acts 5:20)
- “What you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops” Mt. 10:27
Snacktown Street Fair on July 15 was our biggest outing. This was a huge town event and thousands would be there. I was filled with anxiety: “Will we find our location, will the tent have all its pieces, will all the team members show up….. and will anyone even stop at our table?”
We left our house at 5:30 am. We turned onto the street we were assigned and there it was 67B. Perfect spot! God, you are so good!
Becca arrived with the tent. It went up perfectly! God, you are so good! By 11:00 am, we had eight team members ready to evangelize! And once again I said: “God, you are so good”! I was now ready for the day! Little did I know that I would hear someone say to me “God whispered to me” and that I would see the eyes of Jesus!
Becca and Dan were out on the street and Father and I were behind the table. A woman approached Dan and said, “This is my story…..I was raised Catholic however I stopped practicing, got married to a Baptist, and became Baptist. Can I come back?” Dan said, “Yes, you can come back! Go see Father." Father then spoke to her about our RCIA program and invited her to join us. I then went over and introduced myself as a member of the RCIA team.
The woman then began to share more of her story with me. She began, “God whispered to me, I believe He is calling me back!” She said “I had a friend pass away recently and I attended his Catholic funeral. I was asked to do one of the readings and I was so moved. It made me think of my grandmother who was a devout Catholic." And then she said, “That night, I felt I heard God speaking to me to come back”. She ended with "You know…I believe God and my grandmother want me to return to the Catholic faith."
Dan was offering one of the medals from our table to a couple who had stopped. The man said, “Do you have St. Peregrine medal?” Dan began to say “no”….however the day before I was going thru a small bag of medals recently given to us and I found St. Peregrine. I did not have them out on the table at the time….but knew they were in my box. I quickly found the medal and gave it to Dan. He placed it on a chain and gave it to the man. His name was Ron. He immediately began to cry. I asked to pray with him. As we finished and tears streamed from his bloodshot eyes, he said “My wife died a year ago and I was just diagnosed with throat cancer.” My eyes were then fixed on his. And I remembered the prayer from the morning….”Let us fix our gaze on the Blood of Christ”! I was looking right into the eyes of the Precious Blood of Jesus!
With these two experiences alone…….….. I can’t help but “proclaim it to the housetops!”
Don't forget about the Eucharist!
July 31, 2023
By Connie & Dan Klunk, team members
After unloading at the New Oxford Market on the Square, we parked our vehicle behind the rectory at Immaculate Conception church just down the street. We had 8 other team members join us at different points of the day, some new just to observe what we do!
The first visitor was the Pastor from Harvest Chapel by the Bridges golf course. He was happy to see another faith-based group. Father Lyons noticed everyone that passed with a dog and suggested we get “dog treats” for our next outing (which we did!).
I encountered many people I knew. One person I used to work with stopped by. I knew she had left the Catholic church and I asked her if she has returned. She said “Oh no, I love where I am. I get excited every Sunday I wake up because I can’t wait to get to church. She said, “I never felt that way in the Catholic church.” I told her I'd pray for her and gently said…. "Please remember….don’t forget about the Eucharist! We have the Real Presence of Jesus." She bowed her head and said…."Well….I know….but we have communion once or twice a month." She immediately turned away and suggested we have lunch sometime. I smiled and said agreed.
The last couple we encountered was someone who grew up on Main Street in McSherrystown and use to go to ABVM (Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish). I told him how we are renovating the inside and that he should come by sometime to see the stations of the cross. He goes to his wife’s church and they attend Mountain Top church in Chambersburg. He ended that he would like to bring his wife to see our church because he always thought it was so beautiful! I said to look for us and we will welcome you!
Overall, a good day in New Oxford!
A Breath of Encouragement Encountering Fellow Christians
June 12, 2023
Our team is keen to reach the lost and those fallen away from the Church. However, on certain occasions, it's a breath of encouragement when we encounter believers, even Protestants on our outings. We end up swapping glory stories, sharing about why it's important for Catholics to be out on the street, and when Jesus is coming back. Our most recent outing in the Gettysburg Square seemed to be an "on-purpose" breath of encouragement from the Lord. We encountered a Knight of Columbus, a diocesan employee from a New Jersey diocese, an amazing family sold out for Jesus very active in the Protestant Church, an Eastern Rite Catholic visiting the area, some college girls who had rerouted a trip to Boston to come to Gettysburg because of "Satan-Con", and some individuals with a history in the Baptist Church. It isn't always a difficult sell to unbelievers and atheists - sometimes it's like this last outing: the Body coming together to encourage a witness to the world or chat about when Jesus is coming back and asking "Can He come back now?". Sometimes it's a rosary taken by a woman whose husband is Baptist and nervous about what the Baptist Minister might think. And sometimes it's a real chat where we speak out the name of Jesus over and over, sharing a desire for people to know Him. Our last outing was that encouraging breath from our fellow workers in the vineyard and in turn, an opportunity to encourage them with our presence and our solidarity in God's work. Obviously, it was a spiritual oxygen boost for our team to continue the work.
Amazing Experiences for a First-Time Outing for Team Members in Gettysburg
April 18, 2023
Written by Dan & Connie Klunk
Our first outing at the St. Francis Xavier Christmas Bazaar in Gettysburg was amazing!
Our table was right inside the door as the people entered.
Brochures had to be punched in order to enter raffle which drew people to us.
Announcements were made if prayer is needed to visit our table.
We came with the intent to “observe” Becca because of her experience :). Within minutes of arrival…a lady came up asking us to pray for her sister. Dan and I prayed with her and she cried the entire time. She was alone for the first time at the bazaar. Her mother (who died this past year and loved the bazaar) always came with her. She was very sad. About an hour later, I saw her from a distance with a smile on her face and a bag in hand. She immediately came over and showed me her purchase. I said it is good to see you smiling. She then left and came back a third time….now remembering that her parents got married at Annunciation church and asked for directions so she could come visit sometime. She then asked to exchange phone numbers ….”so she could contact me and perhaps get together to have lunch”!
Later, another person came and got the brochure stamped and didn’t say much. Sometime later, I saw her looking over at our table…..and suddenly she approached me and said “Would you pray for me…..I was just diagnosed yesterday with breast cancer”. Another….shared with me “good news” …that two years ago her now 10 yr. old granddaughter was diagnosed with cancer and is now cancer free! And during those two years watched her daughter-in-law and how she handled things and realized she really knows God.
Dan encountered several non-Catholics as he was handing out rosaries. Some said “no” however two actually took the rosaries and the brochure on how to say the rosary. Dan encountered a woman who asked for prayer for her sister who just lost her son. One lady took the miraculous medals and shared with me that her mother was Catholic. She shared with me that she listens every week to Dr. Schuler on TV. I then offered her the brochure on the reasons to return to the Catholic faith….however she declined. Dan also encountered a man who said he has 10 miraculous medals that were touched by Saint Mother
Teresa of Calcutta! Four he gave to his children and the other six he still has. Another man came up to Dan and took one of the miraculous medals and held it up and said: “THIS WORKS!” Dan said…yes, I know, and showed him the one he was wearing. One woman told Dan that after her mother died she found her mom’s miraculous medal! Dan told the woman that the same thing happened to him….he found a very large miraculous medal and now keeps it near the picture of his mother.
After a long conversation with a woman, I asked if there was anything she would like me to pray for her…..she gave a huge sigh….and began saying “I have a cyst on my arm…..and many other issues….yes, please pray for me”. One of my friends from church stopped at our table to see what we were doing. My friend’s sister was
with her who is having heart issues. As they walked away, her sister turned and said “Thank you for all you are doing”! My friend decided to take a miraculous medal out of the basket….and as she looked at the medal….it was a medal of ST. JUDE!! My friend was in awe and so were we (we didn’t know where that came
from)! It was the saint of the impossible. My friends’ three sisters are all going through almost impossible illnesses and she is their support. She held tightly to the medal as she walked away.
Parishioners from Annunciation (who we seldom get a chance to talk to) noticed us at the table and stopped. We explained why we were there and told them they would see us “greeting and welcoming” tomorrow at our parish in a new ministry called St. Barnabas. They said….they will look for us tomorrow.
Several people wanted us to pray for their children who no longer go to church. One person had a question for Father Lyons about “will her husband know her when she gets to Heaven?” She was very emotional and began to cry…..still missing him terribly. Stayed and talked for awhile and seemed comforted as she walked away.
Overall, we all prayed with many people that day. Some came to us…..and some we asked if they needed prayer. All were hurting in many different ways.
TRULY….AN AMAZING DAY!