The Catholic Foundation is honored to support remarkable ministries that tirelessly build community and radiate Christ’s boundless love.One such ministry, ‘Del Dolor a la Gracia’, a Catholic Foundation 2023 Impact Grant recipient, provides a transformative “Grief to Grace” retreat in Spanish. This initiative is a beacon of hope for individuals who have silently suffered painful wounds caused by traumatic events, such as sexual abuse.

Sister Mary Peter, SOLT, a therapist working at the Catholic Charities in Southeast Detroit, has been an integral part of this ministry since its inception. As a full-time therapist, she has witnessed the profound impact of ‘Del Dolor a la Gracia’ on countless lives.

The retreat was brought to Detroit three years ago, and takes place over five days, twice a year, accommodating a maximum of 16 participants. It uniquely combines psychology and faith to heal deep wounds, involving therapists, priests, and prayer ministers in the process. Although initially the retreat was aimed at victims of sexual abuse, it was soon seen that it is also extremely healing for other types of abuse: physical (violence), emotional, manipulation of conscience or abandonment. 

What sets ‘Del Dolor a la Gracia’ apart is its understanding of how God designed the human heart. It specializes in helping individuals open up and heal emotional wounds that have been blocked off due to trauma. The retreat creates a safe space for people to share their stories and learn from the experiences of others, fostering a profound sense of community and understanding.

Sister Mary Peter describes her involvement in this ministry as an honor, being the hands and feet of God in a concrete and sacred way. It is  a safe place where individuals expose their most vulnerable places, and she and the team stand by them as they receive God’s love and healing. This ministry serves as a bridge, bringing together laypeople who know their community intimately, working hand in hand with pastors and nuns to serve those in need.

Each year, the ministry hosts a vibrant event called “Noche Mexicana – Mexican Night.” This gathering features a Mexican meal, musical performances, and a presentation about the retreat and its psychological healing approach. It’s a celebration of faith, community, and the resilience of the human spirit. This helps the broader community learn about the retreat and support its efforts to ensure that financial reasons do not hold anyone back from attending. 

By supporting ‘Del Dolor a la Gracia’ through its competitive granting funds, the Catholic Foundation joins hands with this extraordinary ministry to bring God’s love and hope to those who need it most. Together, we bear witness to the profound transformation that unfolds when faith, compassion, and community come together.

As we witness the incredible impact of ‘Del Dolor a la Gracia,’ we invite you to explore the world of the Catholic Foundation of Michigan’s granting funds. These funds directly support ministries like ‘Del Dolor a la Gracia,’ enabling them to bring healing and hope to those who need it most.

Explore the Catholic Foundation’s granting funds, consider making a financial contribution, and join us in making a difference. Your support ensures that more ministries like ‘Del Dolor a la Gracia’ have the resources they need to reach those silently suffering from pain and trauma.

Together, we can radiate Christ’s boundless love and create a brighter, more compassionate world. Click the link below to learn more and give today.