Rockford Diocesan Charismatics Hold Day of Renewal
BY RON BERGMAN, For The Observer
May 23, 2019
ROCHELLE—Father Robert “Bob” Miller and Dr. Mark Nimo spoke on the theme, “What Would Jesus Have ME Do?” on April 27 in the St. Patrick, Rochelle, parish center at a Charismatic Day of Renewal sponsored by the diocesan Office of Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services. Attendees came from throughout the diocese.
 
Father Miller and Nimo, both of whom live in the Archdiocese of Chicago, have addressed groups throughout the U.S. and beyond. 
 
They reminded those gathered of Psalm 27:4, “One thing I ask of the Lord, this I seek: to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.” That message is a clear encouragement to keep our lives focused more directly on the Lord and His promise of eternal life. 
 
Although God’s people strive to fulfill that goal, Father Miller said it is common for those who endeavor to go ever deeper with God often to run into major blocks, one of which he and co-presenter Nimo call “toxic shame.”
 
As God’s creations, people are created beautiful, in His image. Our “DNA is divine,” they said, adding, “healthy shame” is knowing that God created us with a healthy set of limits and  the ability to realize when we have transgressed them. Healthy shame is typically accompanied by humility, a knowledge of our need to forgive others and seeking reconciliation. In short, healthy shame turn us toward God.
 
“Toxic shame,” they said, turns us away from God. It often finds its roots very early in life, sometimes as early as 12-18 months of age. 
 
It tells us lies and that we, ourselves, are the mistake rather than the truth that something we did was the mistake. 
 
Toxic shame is evil, diabolic, destructive and tends to distort the truth that we are children loved unconditionally by God. It often results in a false belief that something is seriously wrong with each of us. 
 
Father Miller explained that toxic shame often is deeply seated within us. Many of us are not even aware that it has set in. So when we sin, toxic shame piles on the false narrative that we are the problem and we react by hiding it and keeping it buried within ourselves rather than taking it to God. 
 
We carry guilt, covering up our mistakes and often projecting our guilt on others. It keeps us from opening ourselves to God who freely forgives. Its goal is to separate us from God. 
 
So, in answer to their question — “What Would Jesus Have ME Do?” — Nimo said Jesus wants us to “get real” with ourselves and God and let Him set us free so we can become our authentic selves as God sees us, beautifully created.
 
He is there to help us identify the difference between “healthy shame” and “toxic shame.” He calls us to focus all aspects of our lives on Him and freely forgives us and welcomes us into a close relationship with Him. 
 
Nimo and Father Miller then outlined three steps to move away from toxic shame: 
 
– Discovery: realizing that “toxic shame” has taken hold in our lives; 
 
– “Uncovery”: bringing to light what has been hidden from us; and 
 
– Recovery: asking forgiveness and allowing God’s love to heal us. 
 
The day ended with prayers for healing, asking and trusting that the Lord will answer the prayers for relief from “toxic shame” to better enable us to come closer to the heart of Jesus each and every day. 
 
Watch for information abut the fall day of renewal on the Catholic Charismatic Rrenewal Services website http://charismaticrenewal.rockforddiocese.org/