Brazilian Carnival is largely known is a huge festival with organized parades, samba and dancers. Every year lots of people join the festival held in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Pernambuco and Bahia, where take place the biggest parties. However, it has been increasing the amount of those who decide to participate of a christian carnival. This year, about 130 000 people in more than 100 cities of Brazil spent their holiday in meeting organized by Shalom Catholic Community. Praise and prayers of healing, adoration to the Holy Sacrament, Holy Mass, talks, seminars, courses about intimacy with God, liturgical celebrations, counseling and confessions were all part of the 4-day event.
The main goal of the retreat is to provide for the participants a personal encounter with Jesus in order to discover God’s personal love. The Life in the Spirit Seminar is the main workshop, which seek to promote a renewal of the gifts of the Holy Spirit received in the baptism bringing people into a deeper experience with Jesus and the catholic faith.
There were also workshops of catholic spiritual formation for those who had already made the Life in the Spirit Seminar with themes such as chastity and vocational path. Moreover, children has a special place where they can pray and make the same experience of the seminar and the courses for adults but in a especial method for them. Deaf people could take part as well through the help of interpreters available to translate for them each moment.
However, the most interesting point of this retreat is that unlike the carnival what is experienced don’t finish in the last day but continues because the participants are invited to go to the evangelization centers of the Shalom Catholic Community of each city, where there are prayer groups to deepening the new relationship with Jesus Christ and the new friends.