Bishop Howard J. Hubbard will be with the staff of Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons School in Schenectady during their upcoming retreat - at least in spirit. The group will use the second diocesan "Amazing God" DVD retreat, "The Heart of Christ," as a guide.

Bishop Hubbard speaks throughout the DVD, which features themes like, "the heart of Christ suffers" and interviews with local people from diverse backgrounds. Written by an Amazing God committee, it was filmed by Time Warner Cable.

It's "a perfect tool to use because there's unity in the heart of Christ," said Kathleen Duff, ND-BG campus minister.

Ms. Duff will use three segments and a viewing guide (see www.amazinggodrcda.org) at the staff day, plus her own questions.

Many parishes plan to use the Amazing God DVD for Lenten retreats with adults and faith formation students, as supplements to Bible study, for senior or youth groups and book clubs and as after-Mass enrichment. Some may make copies of the DVD for parishioners to use at home.

"If we offer different styles, people will hopefully take advantage," said Dorothy Sokol, parish life director at Our Lady of Grace parish in Ballston Lake.

Bereavement ministers at St. Helen's and Our Lady of Fatima parishes in Schenectady used the DVD at an enrichment session and will use more each month.

"It certainly helps them focus on, 'Who are the people we are encountering?'" said Sister Betsy VanDeusen, CSJ, pastoral associate for evangelization at the two parishes. After watching the DVD, "people sat next to one another and just talked about different people who had inspired them and why."

Joyce Solimini, diocesan associate director of adult faith formation, said the DVD doesn't just have to be used in church.

"There are so many seekers out there," she said. The DVD may answer, "How do we as Catholics relate to Jesus?"