Catholic Messenger article May 2017 St. Thomas More mini-retreat

Retreat-goers embrace ‘prodigal son journey’ – The Catholic Messenger



By Mary Jedlicka Humston
For The Catholic Messenger

“I am moved beyond words by this presentations and fellowship.” “I felt the presence of the Holy Spirit.” “His love of Jesus shined.”

The positive comments kept coming after Bob Colquhoun spoke at the Finding Light in the Darkness Mini-Retreat on April 29 at St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Coralville.

Bob Colquhoun speaks at St. Thomas More-Coralville’s mini-retreat April 29.

Colquhoun held nothing back in telling how far he had fallen from God. As a graduate of Washington High School in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, he was a celebrated varsity swimmer and musician, but he turned away from all that and gradually headed toward a sin-riddled life. His initiation into this world began with marijuana and a deep need to fit in with the “right” clique.

After becoming the lead singer in a rock-and-roll band in Florida, he became heavily involved in the drug world as both an addict and dealer. Continuing with this lifestyle, he abandoned his family. He attempted suicide. He spiraled even deeper when in September 1995 he was arrested as a passenger in a stolen car, charged with theft, and sentenced. He spent the next 7 ½ years in an Arizona prison.

It was there that Colquhoun, of Marion, Iowa, turned his life around and began a “Prodigal Son” journey back to God. He attended and led Bible studies while incarcerated, finding the healing light of God’s love. Once released from prison, Bob eventually began a ministry of speaking and singing. (For more information, go to

As Colquhoun said in his written testimony, “I believe God has called me to tell my story, which I do in both word and song. What else can I do but praise Him for the extraordinary graces I’ve received? Perhaps some might be spared the hell I endured. Perhaps some might come to realize how great a gift it is to love the One who is Love Itself.”

Mary Schepker, one of the three retreat coordinators, says, “On a cold, dark, dreary day…Bob Colquhon was asked to bring retreat participants out of the darkness and into the light. By the time the retreat wrapped up at noon, he had enlightened those present with his amazing story of hope and promise.”

Another coordinator, Karyl McCarty adds, “Bob brought his message to life in word and song. This was a Saturday morning well-spent.” And, still, the retreat participants’ comments continued. “Very powerful story of escaping the darkness and being a light for God’s love.” “He has inspired me to be a better Christian…to strengthen my relationship with Jesus Christ.” “I only wish some of my friends could have heard Bob’s story.”

(Mary Jedlicka Humston, one of the retreat coordinators, has been a St. Thomas More parishioner since 1982.)

St. Thomas More Catholic Church Mini Retreat 4/29/2017 Finding Light in the Darkness

The following are comments and feed back from 4-29-2017

Finding Light in the Darkness mini retreat. Keynote speaker

Bob Colquhoun.

Hi, Bob,
Here are just a smidge of the great comments we rec’d from the evaluations.  As you can see, your presentation touched many.
Thank you so much for the great work you did at our mini-retreat!  ☺
Why did you come?
“To be inspired and WOW was I ever!
Other comments.
“Bob is an awesome speaker, story teller and disciple of Jesus.”
“He was brave and boldly shared his story.”
“More than filled me with joy and felt the presence of the Holy Spirit.”
“Very powerful story of escaping the darkness and being a light for God’s love.”
“How do you find these powerful speakers?”
“I find that these retreats “fire up” my faith. Bob did a wonderful joy of doing that.  His love of Jesus shined.”
“What an amazing inspirational story. I didn’t want it to end.”
“The speaker was wonderful. His message spoke to me.”
“Bob was an inspiration.”
“Bob’s joy and enthusiasm in Jesus and God inspire me.”
“Sometimes it’s uneasy to bear the darkness but bearing it makes God’s light shining through his story even more radiant.”
“God’s energy in Bob.”
“How one can be redeemed.”
“That he went through all he did and recovered.”

Love. Do we really understand ?

click on the link to watch on Youtube. Thanks God bless.

Speaking at the 2014 IAUMC Annual Conference

Hope you enjoy this

Leading worship at a youth event



Set Free

Set Free

By Bob Colquhoun

Imagine yourself for a moment, sitting next to God and looking down at the world.  Everywhere you look people are trapped inside self-made prisons: Heartache, depression, loneliness, distrust, self-doubt, jealousy, a loss of self-worth, obesity, addictions, and an overall feeling of emptiness. Then you see those that get caught up chasing a life style of more and more, until one day they wake up and find themselves addicted to the chase and living in a self-made prison called WANT. We have created a world of, “nobody cares so why should I”, and “I’m only looking out for me “and “what I can get with the least amount of effort?” It is  a world where there seems to be a lack of strong moral values and a loss of all respect for true love and kindness and all that God has created us to be. It’s as if we live in a world/prison where people just don’t care anymore. We are so lost in trying to find happiness through “things” that when we fail, we turn to drugs and alcohol to self-medicate so we can cope with living in a prison called failure that we’ve created in our minds.

I spent 15 years of my life living in that world, a world so centered on me, it became a prison of me, me, me, and I found myself trapped in anger, rage, and self righteous emptiness. Sure I thought I was on top of the world but, like so many others, I lived a superficial life, making myself believe I was happy.  In reality, I was living in a self-made prison with no hope of finding a way to escape. I spent countless nights full of pain, tears and suffering in the emptiness of my personal prison.  I was crying inside for something or someone to rescue me and set me free. In the darkest, lowest, and angriest point of my life, when I was the worst of the worst, God miraculously came into my heart and set me free. He alone took away all the pain and suffering.  He rescued me from myself, and spared me from physical and emotional death on more than one occasion. He took away the bondage of sin and my self-made prisons and set me free.  He gave me the only gift that truly matters, His unconditional love and forgiveness.  Why? Why did he even care about me at all?

Now imagine Jesus Christ sitting next to God, His Father, looking down at the world and seeing that it was spinning out of control.  It was obvious that they needed to set a plan in motion that would save us from ourselves, and the penalty of sin. So, because God loved us so much – as much as a parent loves a child, He sent His one and only Son Jesus, into the world to give us an escape from our prisons. To accomplish this He had to live the example, to teach us that true life and freedom come from and through obedience to God.  He had to show us the powerful love that God has for us by suffering rejection, hate and ultimately, death. Through His life and death on earth and his resurrection back to life, He created a way for us all to be released from our self-made prisons.  By the surrendering of ourselves, and giving up the things that keep us away from God we can all be set free.  If we want unconditional love and complete forgiveness, all we have to do it claim our spot in the family of God and mean it!

So the next time you are reading your Bible, or sitting in Church, or just thinking about God, remember as Jesus hung on that cross, suffering and dying, He did this so that everyone could know and live in freedom, and so that we would understand and know true love in Him and through Him. Please take the time read the verses from God’s word, and listen to the songs that He has written through me. Because of His love for me, I am free, and I am truly and totally in love with Him. What are you waiting for, what do you have to lose. Surrender every bit of who you are to Jesus and be set free.

Jeremiah 29:11-13 / John 3:16 /    Romans 3:23, 5:1-8, 6:23, 10:9, 10:13 / Philippians 2:3-11

May the power of God’s love, grace, and mercy be your everything.

Time With God

First off I want to thank you all for the communication and comments that we share.  Yes, I know it’s been a while since I have written, and I do appreciate the kind words from all of you.  I have been spending a lot of time with God in preparation of what lies ahead in my life. With that said here we go.

Time With God

By Bob Colquhoun

I find it very interesting that as humans we spend so much time in search of things that we believe will bring us happiness, pleasure and contentment. From fame and fortune to unrealistic love, we search the world high and low to find anything to fill our desires, and in the process we stumble into alcoholism, and drug abuse, only to end up in depression and loneliness. I know.  I spent many years chasing the dream of being a rock star and I sat at the door of a record deal only to wash it all away with drugs and alcohol. I filled my emptiness and pain with anything that would keep me numb. I became consumed with drugs and violence, and the darkness that surrounds a life without God.  In the end, it took 7 ½ years in prison to help me find what I was always looking for. The funny thing is, it was there the whole time.  In a place so consumed by hate, drugs, and violence, I met and fell deeply in love with Jesus Christ. Prison became my learning ground and I spent every spare moment with God. Time with God became the most important part of my life, and it still is today. Now, I hear what you’re thinking . . . that I was in prison, I didn’t have a job, nowhere to go, nothing to do, so why not spend all your time with God. That is the farthest from the truth you can get. I had a job, went to school, sang in a band, and played sports. There was plenty to consume my time with and I did just that, but I also made time for 8 Bible studies a week and two college courses on the Bible, and that’s not including all the studying I did on my bunk.  You see, we all have our prisons, mine was just behind razor wire and I could not leave.  We all create things and places, and situations in our lives that we become prisoners to.  Whether jobs, hobbies, sports, relationships or anything else that you can’t seem to escape from that is keeping you from time with God, these become our prisons.

I have been out now almost 12 years and I get how life can just get in the way. I am a single dad raising my 8 year old by myself.   I have a full time job and a ministry that I am praying God will grow into a worldwide ministry, I am a worship leader and a youth leader and my daughter is in sports. Sometimes there just doesn’t seem to be enough time for anything and yet here I am on a Saturday night spending time with God and you. I too have the highs and the lows of life. I have had my share of pain and suffering and the heart ache of life lost, and the emptiness that comes with feeling lonely.  So I get that life can beat you down.

I guess the point I am trying to get to is, that if you’re empty, and lost, and feeling alone stop searching in place that will only fulfill you for a moment.  Jesus Christ will fill you for eternity. He will give you the desires of your life according to His will. You must be willing to surrender your heart and your spirit, your body, your soul, and your mind to Him. You then must allow Him to mold you into who He wants you to be. In Him you will find true love and He will teach you how to love yourself so that you too can truly love. We were created to love; only we have taking that blessing of His love and have turned it to worldly lust.


So there you are, out on the town in search of something that’s just not there.  Instead of trying to fill your life with empty things, take a chance with God and watch what He will do. He saved my life with a miracle by sending me to prison.  Through all the pain, the suffering, and the heart ache of life, He has allowed me to experience and know the joy of true love. I thank God everyday for who He is in my life and for true love. There will always be highs and lows and life will continue to do everything it can to beat you down, but by surrendering to Him and by spending time with Him, He will carry you through. So now how are you going to send your time?         I choose God and true love.

Psalm 21: 1-6 / Psalm 23 / Jeremiah 29: 11-13 / Mark 11: 24

(Enjoy this song God wrote with me and the video my friend D B put to it. God Bless)




A prayer for Love

A prayer for Love

by Bob Colquhoun

The Lord God Almighty, the One who formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul, the God who rescued me from the grips of evil and gave me love, hope, and new life through and by the death and the resurrection of His one and only Son Jesus Christ, the Alpha and the Omega. The One true God who created all there was and is from nothing, He has filled His word with the promises of paradise and eternal oneness through Him and with Him. To Him be all glory and praise. He is the essence of pure love and hope, and the forgiver for all. There is nothing you can do that He cannot forgive, and there is no one He will ever turn away.  I pray that my life will never reflect religion, but will bring honor and glory to a relationship based on God’s unconditional love, forgiveness, and Agape. Agape, a super natural love that only God can give.

By the surrendering and submitting of who we are, into who He wants us to be, we will begin to understand His unconditional love, grace, and mercy. By allowing Him control of our lives’, His Spirit will begin to guide and teach us to live and love as He intended us to do. Through the power of His Holy Spirit we can become vessels of and for His love. By the reading and understanding through the truth of His word, we will begin to live and love in the knowing of His purpose and will for which He has created us. May our lives be a witness to Your Love, Grace, and Mercy forever and ever. May we be a reflection for all to see, who You truly are. For You are Love. Amen

Genesis 2: 7 / Psalm 145 / Jeremiah 29:11-13 / John 3:16 / Ephesians 5:1

When I’m Alone


When I’m alone I feel His presence. When I’m down He lifts me up. When I’m tired He finds me peaceful rest. When I’m hurting He comforts me. When I feel lost, and confused He shows me who I am through who He is. He is my strength, my fortress, my portion, my shield. He is everything that is righteous and just, and there is nothing He can’t do. When the world lets you down through lies and abuse, He will pick you up for He is truth. In Him there is no sin, therefore His love is pure. In Him there is no darkness, for He is the light. Through Him there is forgiveness filled with His Mercy and His Grace. Through Him there is restoration, His purpose is to save. I once saw the world through darkened eyes full of anger and full of rage. Now through His eyes I see a different world, for in my heart there is no more hate. He is the essence of every breath I take, without Him there can be no life. He is my love, my life, my portion, and my shield; He is the very breath of life. To know Him is to want Him, to want Him is to want to know Him more. I am in love with being in love with Him; everything about Him makes me want Him more. My purpose is His plan and that is to share with all I can that through His love and through His creation, we were created to be in love. He was, and is, and always will be, love. For He alone is God.

Genesis 2: 7 / Psalm 23 / John 3:16 / John 14:6 / 1 Corinthians 13

I Am In Him

I Am In Him
By Bob Colquhoun
Insecurity: 1. The quality or state of being insecure. 2. The lack of assurance, self doubt.
It’s everywhere in everything; in business, school, sports, love, and life. It is one of the leading contributors to depression. Think about it, why are most people depressed? I honestly believe it has a lot to do with how they see themselves through the world’s eyes. They feel like they are not smart enough, or pretty enough, or rich enough, and as a result, just not good enough. It’s the overall feeling of being inadequate. Our society spends so much time exploiting wealth, looks, intelligence, and talent that many people feel like they can’t compete. That can lead to self doubt, and a lack of self worth. One of the most amazing things about God, is that He can take the insecure, the lost, and the wicked and transform them into the greatest vessels for sharing His love and truth. Hear the words of the song “I Am In Him”, that the Lord inspired me to write. Do not see yourself through the eyes of the world but through the unconditional love, grace, and mercy of the Lord God Almighty.

I Am In Him

Original music by Bob Colquhoun and Harry Ebsen –