"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord,
“plans to prosper you and not to harm you,
plans to give you a hope and a future."

(Jeremiah 29:11 NIV) 







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     Janene Ternes, Director
   Prayer in Motion, LLC
   Saline, MI  48176





December 31, 2006

Dear Family and Friends,
As I sat New Year’s Eve quietly reflecting on the year gone by, I was moved by the many blessings I’ve received in 2006. For this newsletter I want to share the highlights from the past year.


Together with my dear friend Sherry we “retreated” in her living room for an afternoon of prayer, brainstorming and capturing on paper the vision, mission, and goals for Prayer in Motion, LLC. After operating for more than 2 years with an inner sense of my calling, it was good to finally have some well-defined statements on paper. Of course one must always be open to the movement of the Spirit and how that will change over time, but the exercise was clarifying and gave needed direction to this past year.


Oddly enough the car accident I shared with you in my last newsletter was the highlight for this month! Amidst the damaged car, leaking water in my basement, broken washer and dryer, and being stopped for speeding on the way to church, I found God’s faithfulness in the hug from a stranger at church, the waived insurance deductible, free loaner car, repaired leak without water damage, gift of a washer, inexpensive used dryer, my supportive, caring brother and a merciful police officer.


The highlight for March had to be my vacation in Florida. At a time when I couldn’t stand the winter anymore but didn’t have the resources for an elaborate vacation, I was gifted by an invitation from my dear friends Karl & Teri to join them in Florida. A favorite memory combines this trip with the Spiritual Exercises I did last year. While sitting next to the bay listening to the surf, I was blessed to be praying on the Baptism of Jesus. The Exercises, which consisted of daily prayer and weekly meetings with my gentle, caring director Lesley, were truly a life-changing experience, bringing me many insights, much healing and a closer relationship with Jesus.


I was very blessed to be the featured speaker for the Professional Pastoral Ministers Association in April. I conducted a retreat day aimed at refreshing one’s spirit especially for those who work in the church and often neglect their own spiritual needs. Besides a wonderfully affirming day of watching the Spirit at work, I was blessed by an article in the Catholic Times highlighting the program.


Last year as in the past, I had the opportunity to help out with Dance Theatre Studio’s annual recital. Without the owner John Durbin and his family’s support and encouragement, my opportunities for dance would never have happened. John was one of the first people God used to bring me from my grief and into this ministry some 6 years ago. Thanks to his willingness to let me help at the studio in exchange for lessons, I have taken multiple dance lessons weekly including ballet, tap, hip/hop, dance exercise and Pilates, each bringing with them insights into the movements I use, improving my technique and feeding my body, mind and spirit.


I was blessed to be asked by my dear friend Brian to bring Prayer in Motion to his weekend retreat for the cognitively impaired. Although I had never worked with this type of group before, I said my usual “yes” to what I felt was God’s call. What an amazing outpouring of the Spirit and such gentle, innocent expression of God’s love I experienced that day. Thanks to Brian for listening to God, having faith in me to do this, helping me prepare, and then giving his stipend for the weekend to me.


July 29th marked the 3rd anniversary of Prayer in Motion, LLC. It’s hard to believe I have been gifted with such a life that has allowed me to pursue my passion while serving God for 3 years now. The greatest gift I received this year has been the peaceful knowing of God’s faithfulness which has enabled me to finally relax in relation to the financial aspects of this business. Somehow God has always provided, even when I look ahead to blank spots on the calendar.


I journeyed to Oscoda, Michigan in August to present a program to youth leaders and Sunday school teachers in the Saginaw Bay District of the United Methodist Church. Attendees participated in their own reflective movement prayer as well as songs to be used with their various aged youth. This opportunity came about as a referral from my frequent presentations at the Sabbath Time Retreats at the St. Francis Retreat Center in DeWitt. The director for these retreats, Mary Tardif, has become a dear friend, mentor and part mother to me.


I was blessed to be able to participate in a weekend liturgical dance conference in Chicago led by Carla DeSola, one of the recognized greats in liturgical dance. During the course of a couple of jam-packed days I learned 5 different dances which we performed in the Sunday service at the Grace Episcopal Church. It was a time of great humility for me, dancing with many accomplished and professional dancers, as well as one of great awe experienced in my first time of actually dancing within the context of a liturgy.


In October I had the opportunity to bring Prayer in Motion to the St. Gerard’s Kids Mission in Lansing. I worked with 3 groups of 50-60 children each ranging from 5 to 10 years old. It was fast paced, at times chaotic, but truly amazing to see so many little ones excitedly participating in prayer.


I was very blessed to be a part of the Lansing Youth Jamboree where hundreds of high school youth came together to learn about and worship God. I launched my “ACTIVEate your Prayer” workshop and had a packed room for all three breakout sessions. It was a time of great fear and trepidation leading up to the day and much leaning on God for inspiration, strength and direction as I ventured into yet another new area. Watching the teens move to a song called “Gotta Serve Somebody”, I saw the lesson of making good choices resonate with them so much better than a lecture on the same topic.


What a joy it was to participate in the Living Nativity Procession at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Ann Arbor again this year! Having learned much from my experience last year, I approached the choreography and teaching of two lovely songs to groups of 20-40 “angels” ranging in age from 5-10 years old, with a much more open attitude. I saw God in each wing and halo that fell off, each fearful, tearful, and excited child in the procession, and most assuredly in their little arms raised and unfolding like a starburst in unison as the choir sang of the “glory of God” at the end of their song. I gasped at the beauty of this moment, giving thanks to be a part of it.

As we move steadily into this new year of endless opportunities and possibilities, I am most grateful for all of God’s blessings I have received and continue to receive through each of you. Thank you for your prayers, your support, your concern, your advice, and most especially for your love. May 2007 be a truly blessed year for each and every one of you.

Prayer in Motion…Let the Spirit move you!

July 19, 2006

Dear Family and Friends,
So much has happened spiritually and professionally in the 4 months since my last update! Right about the time of my last newsletter I had the most incredible series of events unfold. While this is a long story, many who journeyed with me through it have urged me to share it with all of you, so here goes!

On my way home from a most inspiring program on the love of God I gave at the Heart of Jesus Prayer Center in St. Clair Shores in mid-February, I hit a huge hunk of metal on I-275. It turned out to be a portion of a smashed down car that must have fallen off a truck on the way to the dump. I hit it at 70 miles an hour and it didn’t budge. Instead, my car was catapulted into the air, sparks flying. It was still drivable so I kept driving, hoping to get as close to home as possible before I had to call for help. By the grace of God I made it home, neither Mellow (my chocolate lab seat belted in the back) nor I were injured. But the car was a mess. Still shaking, I checked in with my sister Jan and mother-in-law. Somehow misfortune always makes me reach out for reassurance that I am not alone. After I hung up the phone I realized there was water running in the basement from a leak caused when the city replaced the water meter a couple of days earlier. After frantic calls to the police and DPW I got the water to slow to a trickle, cleaned up the mess and headed for bed unable to cope with anything more that night.

The next day (Sunday) my plan was to go to church and then contact my brother to have a look at the car and see what I should do next. I decided to go to church in Saline rather than my parish in Ann Arbor since it was closer in case I had car problems. Running a little late I was hurrying down Michigan Avenue and got stopped for speeding. I begged the police for mercy and they let me go, perhaps more concerned about my mental state than my driving speed at that point! I proceeded to church, arriving about the time of the Psalm… and heard them singing “Lord, I turn to you in time of trouble…” How appropriate, I thought, as I took an open seat near the front.

What I wasn’t expecting though was how alone and miserable I would feel, sitting in a church where I knew no one, still shaken from being stopped by the police, the accident the night before and the leak in the basement. In times of trouble I always miss Don more, wishing he was here to make it all better or at least hold and reassure me as he was so very good at doing! The homily that day just happened to be on marriage since it was near Valentine’s Day. “Oh great”, I thought as I unsuccessfully fought to hold back the tears. The teen age boy I was sitting next to moved as far away from me as possible in the pew. My prayers to God turned desperate. “Lord, I can’t do this alone. I need you to hold me. I need to know you are here for me now.” I searched frantically around the church looking for anyone I might know from whom I might ask for a hug. At times like these the single life is so terribly lonely. My prayers to God became more adamant as I almost commanded him to hold me right now, like a little child throwing a tantrum!

And then it happened! As I prayed silently with my head down I felt a hug from someone coming down the aisle. I looked up to see a woman holding a baby, with a toddler wrapped around her leg, coming back from Communion. She said to me “The Holy Spirit told me you needed a hug” and she held me close. I sobbed and choked out “I do” and collapsed into this stranger’s arms. She stayed a minute and then was gone. I sat there amazed, not caring about the spectacle we just created. Amazed that God answered my prayer – my very specific prayer, right then and there!

The journey after that was amazingly easy and peaceful. My brother checked out the car and found it drivable until it could be fixed. The insurance company waived my deductible and sent me to the Buick dealer in Ann Arbor. The body shop manager there gave me a free loaner car for the 2 weeks it took to repair it. The water leak got fixed. And the washer my brother determined as beyond repair when he came to look at my car got replaced by a beautiful one at no cost from a friend at church. A long way of saying – God is faithful and certainly takes great care of me! So what more can I ask for?!

Program-wise I have done an amazing variety of things. They say it takes a whole village to raise a child. It would seem to take as much support to keep me going! Fortunate for me, I have many dear friends and supporters! On Palm Sunday weekend I traveled to Imlay City on Friday night to do an Easter Tea with 90 women at a Lutheran church there. Thanks to Janelle and Mary Carol who lent me just the right music for that evening. The next day I was in Toledo by 8am to set up for a Parkinson’s symposium that I was invited to exhibit at by my dear friend Larry Elmer, the physician organizing the event. The next day I was at St. Francis with 150 or so children and adults conducting a family religious education program using a wonderful song my friend Joan’s husband, Patrick, downloaded from I Tunes for me after my miserable attempts to learn this technology had failed.

April also brought retreat days held at St. Mary’s in Chelsea for the Professional Pastoral Ministers Association and at Manresa Jesuit Retreat House, my home away from home where Fr. Bernie Owens has supported me so consistently through this amazing mission! I have also been blessed by dear supporter of me, Mary Tardiff, who coordinates the retreats at St. Francis Retreat Center in DeWitt. She has invited me to participate in 4 different retreats this spring and summer bringing Prayer in Motion to the Sabbath Time Retreats, funded by a Lilly Endowment grant to minister to those who work in the Church.

I am so thankful for each and every one of you, truly God’s blessings to me!

Prayer in Motion…Let the Spirit move you!

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