Testimonials

Listen to these Sacred Stories from around the world. One of the greatest evangelization tools is the personal story of transformation and conversion. Hear how our programs are creating missionary disciples.

If you would like to submit a personal testimony on the impact of Sacred Story Institute, its programs and/or publications, follow these guidelines. You may also submit a written testimony by email.

More Testimonials

It made me more aware of my barriers to God’s graces. 

 

Veronica, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks


I had a degree of familiarity with the Ignatian spiritual exercises when my bishop invited me to start them following the 40 weeks book from Fr. Bill Watson.  

I started with my staff and then after a few months decided to start them with a group of men and that followed up with another group. The results were amazing!

We have now done the exercises with about 175 people and about 85 of them have remained together.

The changes in the lives of the people that complete the 40 weeks are very obvious. they become better followers of Christ and they long to serve, to start ministries, to make changes in their lives to help others, to attend daily Mass.

Thank You Fr Bill.

 

Deacon Rigo, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks


I begin with gratitude! Awareness of gratitude rolls forward into the following 24 hours, moment by moment, helping me notice tiny bits of life to be grateful for. Sacred Story practice once a day in the evening for 15 minutes on a timer keeps it simple for me. I find it doable consistently, persistently.

 

Cynthia, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks


What a joy! Currently, I am approximately at week 26.  I am finding myself less anxious and irritable

People and events do not trigger me the way they have in the past.  I'm looking at things through a Sacred Story set of lenses.  My other prayers seem to have become more joyful and getting a real sense of God's love for me.

 

Jim, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks


Sacred Story has been pivotal in my prayer life, allowing God time and space to move in my life. This prayer discipline has enabled me to see His hand in the ordinary and extraordinary events of my life allowing Jesus to make of my life a SACRED STORY ♥️♥️.

 

Monica, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

My life has been sacred thanks to the simplicity of the language used to approach God.

 

Juan, Colombia - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

First, Sacred Story helped me with my whole life confession, because right after I was done confessing my whole life story I felt freed up. I was done with thinking about the past and constantly condemning myself. I was able to move forward. I knew I did not have to think about past sins. I knew that at my next confession I could and would confess sins from that moment forward. The second thing that helped me after  my whole life confession was that I was so freed up that the thoughts of all other sinful things I have done were surfacing and I was able to confess those sins  the following  month.  

 

Cindy, USA - The Whole-Life Confession

 

Inviting God into my life, made me closer to God.

 

Ramon, USA - Inviting God Into Your Life

 

Jesus is now my true divine physician leading me everyday a little closer to his Sacred Heart.

 

Charles, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Going through the Forty Weeks book with a group at our church was the first time I'd really taken a serious look at my spiritual life. To try and improve my relationship with God. And I have seen the benefits in my life. My family life is deeper and has less conflict. I have more internal peace with my life. 

 

Nick, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I was one of the original participants in the 40 weeks and I still follow these principles and it made my life better ! 

 

Lori, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I am inspired by the videos you produce on Youtube.

 

Matthew, USA -  Sacred Story Community

 

I was trying to do fasting and penances that were too much for me and became ill. My confessor said I should try some other program. I found Sacred Story and tried it. It has taught me to pray in a new way. I feel like I still need more guidance in it but I am not giving up. 

 

Shirley, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I had been away from the church for several years and this program made me realize what I was missing and brought me back to my faith and practice.

 

Lila, USA, - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Sacred Story changed my life and inspired me to Love God and myself more deeply!

 

Patricia, USA, - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Some years ago Father Bill gave a presentation about SSI to a packed room full of parish religious education leaders. There were door prizes given. I won his book, Forty Weeks. I had witnessed the benefits for many years of spiritual journaling especially among adults preparing for Baptism or Confirmation. This time I would be the writer becoming more conscious each Week of God’s love and Presence and of the ways I had failed to thank Him for those who had done so much to rear and educate me. My sacramental confessions became filled with sorrow for negligence but also with joy and gratitude for parents, siblings, teachers, and role models.

 

Marilane, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

It helped me focus on the spiritual dimension of my life and brought me much closer to Our Lord,

John, USA - The Whole-Life Confession

 

It has given me more confidence to share my faith and to go deeper into it.

Michael, USA - Understanding The Spiritual World

 

I began the Forty Weeks program eight years ago because I wanted to become better at discernment, which has been the case.  In addition to improved discernment, I found myself a better spouse and parent, which in hindsight makes perfect sense. The addition of Sacred Story Communities in the last eighteen months has given me a wider group of friends who are all striving for holiness.

 

Marietta, USA - Sacred Story Community

 

Sacred Story helped me to get deep into my inner self and going to confession and confessing my whole life's sins has brought me to grow closer to God. I feel Loved and forgiven by Him. My faith has grown immensely since I did 40 Weeks. Thank Fr. Bill  May God Bless you.

 

Grace, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I am just starting and persevering in the hope it will inspire me. 

 

HG, Australia - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I became more aware of my defenses that kept me away from the truth and of God's love.

 

Veronica, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

I am going through  40 Weeks again and  I committed to a year to stay with SSC in the hopes that I will achieve the goals that St Ignatius set out.

 

Mary, USA - Sacred Story Community

 

40 Weeks helped me connect my past to my present by illuminating the people,  circumstances and events that caused wounds in my soul that led me to accept lies about myself and God and rely on myself instead of God for my needs. The practice of Sacred Story prayer helps me daily identify the ways in which God loves, is present with and desires to heal me and the ways in which the Enemy tempts and draws me away from these truths. I’ve learned that healing does not happen overnight, but in God’s perfect timing through the power of the Holy Spirit and the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Reconciliation. As part of a Sacred Story Community I have the immense privilege to also learn from other’s as we journey together on the path toward Eternity.

 

Angie, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks & Sacred Story Community

 

The 40 Weeks journey has changed my life. My life is now dedicated to the Lord and serving others.

 

Theresa, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

My Sacred Story has been a life journey that helped surface my core sinful life; helped me understand why I have difficulties, while helping me appreciate the endless mercy of God.

 

John, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks & Sacred Story Community

 

Understanding the Spiritual World took me farther into seeing my life as sacred but right now, my greatest help has been the Sacred Story Rosary. Father Watson's profound meditations upon the mysteries of the rosary have helped me understand my life more deeply in light of what Jesus is making of me. When I pray the Sacred Story Rosary, I more clearly see that my life has purpose and meaning beyond my brokenness and failures. It gives me hope.

 

Karen, USA - Sacred Story Rosary

 

Participating in the 40 Weeks program helped me to integrate my Catholic faith with God's spirit creating and recognizing my sacred story. 

 

Marcella, USS - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I have become very aware of spiritual influences acting on me during ordinary moments of each day. Just pausing to be aware before I respond to circumstances has helped me call on God's help instead of following destructive responses. This spiritual empowerment has ended my former cycles of discouragement and filled me with hope - hope that I can share with others. 

 

Margaret, USA - Understanding The Spiritual World

Self-examination is something we often dismiss while we make excuses for our behavior. Forty Weeks helped me to examine my life in and for what is truly important. I am going to repeat the process this year starting on my birthday, March 21. 

 

Diana, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The whole life confession helped me to recognize the influence my past had on me, come to terms with it, and move on in a much more God-centered way.

 

Kerry, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The experience was transformative and led me to a deeper understanding of God's Love.

 

Carol, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The Forty Weeks program raised to the surface of my consciousness the following…

1.  How much I am loved by the Redeemer Christ…

2.  How God’s fingerprints are absolutely everywhere…

3.  How God’s Holy Spirit can shed light on God’s grace and my sin…

4.  That I am forgiven by God for my sins as I forgive others for their sins…

5.  God is fully committed to me, desires my inner freedom and shows me mercy and forgiveness for eternity…

All I have to do is accept the above things and follow the Redeemer Christ!

 

Andy, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I participated in Sacred Story 40 weeks and found it to be personally one of the most challenging and rewarding Bible studies I have ever participated in. I wanted to deepen my faith and wanted to better understand the scripture reading that I read daily. Sacred Story 40 Weeks more than met my goals. I established prayer habits that I still use on a daily basis. I would highly recommend Sacred Story 40 Weeks to each and every person who wants to deepen their faith to participate in this wonderful program. Fr. Bill Watson was an excellent director and his videos definitely helped me to understand the various weekly lessons.

 

Carol, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

With Sacred Story Jesus is your personal Spiritual Advisor and Divine Physician.  

 

Charlie, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Sacred Story opened my spiritual life to a new personal level, with Christ as my guide.

 

Estelle, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

Through taking the Forty Weeks program, I was able to discern how to better live my life day to day and stop and evaluate my progress using the guidelines offered by Fr. Watson using St. Ignatius. To meditate on creation, presence, memory, mercy and eternity is a lasting gift.  Our after program, our group has formed a very tight bond and my life has been so enriched by these experiences.

 

Twyla, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

My Catholic Cursillo 4th Day Group is on week 9 of Sacred Story Forty Weeks. For the exercise to pinpoint the Commandments with which I struggle, the Holy Spirit inspired me to use the US bishops examination of conscience which gave me meaningful insights on my deep rooted sins. I trust that more of my Sacred Story will be revealed.

 

Diane, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

As an adult convert, for fifteen years I had been trying to develop a real personal relationship with Christ. What I discovered was that in this relationship what was missing was not Jesus, it was myself! In Sacred Story: Forty Weeks, I learned how to fully bring myself—ALL of myself, especially the parts of me I would rather ignore or deny—into a daily encounter with God.

 

Jared, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Watching the videos from Father Bill Watson, and reading his materials has helped me grow in my Catholic Faith. Thank you.

 

Gloria, USA - Inviting God Into Your Life

 

God is a mystery and illusive to me, but Sacred Story brings him/her closer to me.

 

Jane, USA - Inviting God Into Your Life

 

My entire life is now centered around Christ because of Fr. Watson’s writings on St Ignatius of Loyola and his teachings.

 

Teresa, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The entire Sacred Story journey, from the 40 Weeks program, whole life confession, & deep connection with parishioners in the program, has deepened my faith commitment, & love for my Church & Our Lord and the Blessed Sacrament.

Mary, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks


I understood the power of Christ's redeeming grace and my personal journey to healing and conversion!

 

Judith, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Foundational Premise:  TRY TO FIND GOD IN ALL THINGS.....ALL FOR HIS GREATER GLORY.

 

David, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks & Sacred Story Community

 

It transformed my life. The whole-life confession; to tell the story of my whole life in confession was transforming, and increased my Faith in the Merciful, Forgiving, Father

 

Grace, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Forty Weeks actually helped me to understand why Jesus Christ came into this world. It also helped me to understand how the enemy of human nature tempted Adam and Eve, thus causing them to commit the first sin and lose paradise. To gain entry back into paradise, God sent His only one Son Jesus Christ to redeem us and gain back the entry to paradise.

 

Flavy, Canada - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I did not know my life was a Sacred Story until I started the "Forty Weeks" program. What a difference to know about it now, and this has really changed my relationship with the Lord for the better. I see how I have the rest of my lifetime to continue to get closer to the Lord, and all of eternity to live with Him forever. Thank you Sacred Story Institute!

 

Libby, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I refer to this material and the examen method of creation, presence, memory, mercy, and eternity,  is very helpful.

 

Sandra, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The Forty Weeks exercises were inspirational, including whole life confession, found to be such a peace-of-mind opportunity for an elderly person with disabilities.

 

Burt, USA - The Whole-Life Confession

 

The Whole-Life Confession gave me understanding forgiveness and mercy 

 

Tikki, USA - The Whole-Life Confession

"Forty Weeks" provided understanding and support throughout my forty week journey to help me work through some of my issues and come to a better understanding of God's Will in my life. Through the support and nurturing of my Sacred Story Community, I was able to better understand some of the reasons for repeatedly confessing sins that I had already confessed, and to concentrate on my relationship with Jesus. Father Watson is a wonderful example of discipleship.

 

Alice, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks & Sacred Story Community

 

Sacred Story Forty Weeks deepened my faith.

 

Mary Lynne, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The Whole-Life Confession was Very Powerful.

 

Kathy, USA - The Whole-Life Confession

 

The 40 weeks were time well spent with a growth in awareness of God active in my life, and others lives', and continues to grow every day since I completed the study/reflection. 

 

Abbie, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The Forty Weeks Journey and reflections helped me to know myself better and therefore become closer to God.

 

Heather, Australia - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Understanding the Spiritual World helped lead me towards my purpose in life

Paul, USA - Understanding the Spiritual World

Sacred Story Community has helped me with my depression.

 

Lois, USA - Sacred Story Community

 

Through these exercises I learned how to structure my prayer life. But more importantly, I learned how very much God loves me, and how my sins do not define me. I understand that I will fall, but what matters most is that I get back up and try again. I am not so hard on myself now. I recognize patterns of sin, consolations,  desolations and their roots.  I understand that I need to surrender all of my sinful tendencies to God completely. He alone can heal me.

 

Marie, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

I have bought all the books from SSI. I have completed True Heart, and I'm just beginning Forty Weeks. TH helped me greatly in my discernment process. Even though it's directed at young people and I'm in my mid 40s, it has helped me see things that I hadn't till now. And it helped me see my relationship with God in a way I hadn't all these years. May God continue to bless, guide, and protect Fr. Bill and the entire SSI team, and all those who use these precious and life-transforming resources. Thank you, Fr. Bill, for creating this. 

 

Santhosh, India - True Heart

 

It brought me peace. And I continue to pray and meditate on the Forty Weeks book.

 

Karen, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

My life was made a sacred story through the discovery of the anti-story that I had been living. Through the 40 Weeks program of prayerful reflection and examination of conscience, I discovered the reasons why I was not living the authentic and faithful life that God meant for me to live. The 40 Week program was a pilgrimage of my soul back to our beloved Lord Jesus, a rejuvenation of my faith, and a restoration of wholeness and holiness to my life. 

 

Heather, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

It helped me deal with my spiritual procrastination.

Paul, Malta - Inviting God Into Your Life

 

The daily discipline of Sacred Story prayer gives me a compass within my heart. When the ways of the world tempt me to despair, Sacred Story prayers and affirmations help me embrace the quiet of the still small voice of the Holy Spirit and discern truth.

 

Teresa, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks


The programs brought me closer to God and my relationship with Him.

 

Michael, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks & Sacred Story Community

 

I began Forty Weeks because my spiritual directee was going through it.  I then began going through it myself and switched to the Letters from Prison version.  The Lord had me in contact with the deacon who was in charge of prison ministry in the archdiocese. I felt very much directed from the Lord to go through the program and make myself available as a penpal.  The deacon is in the process of getting it cleared in our prison system.  I am now still able to "bear fruit in old age" by being a penpal and helping get the prison ministry program with Letters from Prison started in my city.

 

Mary Jane, USA - Forty Weeks ~ Letters from Prison

 

Sacred Story became a huge part of my everyday life. The Chapters of Creation, Presence, Memory, Mercy and Eternity have changed my life. They are flowing out of me from God’s unconditional Love and Patience. If I start feeling low, I ask the Holy Spirit to lift me by combing away the tangles of deception and to live in the Present. 

 

Huguette, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

The spiritual readings of Sacred Story and the community inspire my faith journey.

 

Gail, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks & Sacred Story Community

 

Sacred Story 40 weeks changed my life and relationship with family and made new friends.

The disciplines are life changing and great changes for life. I am still friends with some in my group and we continue to pray together and share. Thank you Fr Watson

 

Joanna, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

Forty Weeks helped me to expand my spiritual life by making me aware of the importance of prayer throughout the day. 

 

Carol, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

As a Believer who loves the Lord and prays for others and reads the Word; it is a joy to be part of this Holy Community and be inspired by the emails sent to me.

 

Maria, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks & Sacred Story Community

 

In making the Whole-Life Confession, I was able to reflect on my entire life, to date, and see in retrospect where my failings, weaknesses have been. Presenting this all to Jesus at one time, for His blessing and forgiveness, gave me a great peace and sense of hopefulness for the future.

 

Mary, USA - The Whole-Life Confession


Sacred Story has been 10 years of gratitude. It is always the start of my day. It continues to be a journey with Jesus that always gives me time for reflection and listening.

 

John, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks

 

Sacred Story Forty Weeks has helped me to practice self evaluation to give myself as a gift for others. 

 

Jeff, USA - Sacred Story/Forty Weeks