local_offer Sessions

‘Abide in Me, as I abide in you’ (Jn. 15:4.)

eventWednesday, 27 September 2023

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And the JOURNEY begins…WE Gather that we may REMAIN IN HIM! ‘

Life is always a great journey that constantly calls us to leave ourselves behind to follow the desire that drives us. Our journey to the land of Mere Marie Eugenie may have had different meanings, faces and stories, but everything is a process of learning and growing. It is a process of coming to know our deepest desire to be able to be with the rest of the ‘Third Year’ participants and the sisters here in the Mother House. Each one of us received a warm welcome from the sisters: from a secured trip from the airport to Mo. Marie Eugenie’s tomb, the chapel and to our rooms. We were thrilled on how the sisters made us feel so special.

Our week started with a simple, and yet, beautiful opening liturgy. We were then asked to write, on a paper leaf, the grace we would like to receive during the session. A symbolic act of placing the desire of each one of us - coming from the one source – onto the branch of a tree where the hopes of all were intimately entwined. A very good reminder that we cannot remain in Christ apart from His Word – we must be connected to Him and to His creation.

Sr. Rekha’s opening message was filled with graces and blessings. We are “encouraged to get into the rhythm of attentive listening that we may be transformed and become Good News to our Provinces.”

After the practicalities on how to use the microphones, and an introduction to the schedule of what we are to live for the next three months were given, we re-visited the stories of the significant areas of the Garden, the Chapel, and toured the whole House. Re-living the history of the sisters, who have walked and prayed through the corridors and grounds of the Mother House, connected our journey of faith with theirs as we thought about all those who will follow us.

Sr. Rekha’s three-day session on the ‘Gospel of John’ helped us to intensify our encounter with Jesus. Most of us had a life-changing experience leading us to a deeper knowledge and love of Jesus. The Johannine theology of mission, made us aware of the ‘migration of God’ from the heavens, and the shift that we need to make so that we may continue to bask in His Presence within each one of us, and abide in His love.

Sr. Marthe’s ‘Community Building’ session brought us to the ground of growth when she journeyed with us to understand better what it means ‘to let go’ of whatever it is that holds us back from fully trusting in God’s love. Our sharing helped us to loosen our grip, surrender, and notice the signs that will make us better members of our communities. It was a day of fun and of knowledge, discovering the beauty of one another's hearts of love and passion for God. Truly, we are intertwined and connected with each other because of our desire to make our communities ‘a dwelling place of God’.

Our life is anchored in our relationship with God, and every day we build genuine stories about our daily encounter with Him. Sr. Mary Cecilia gave us space for silence, which helped us to rest in a deeper faith. That each one of us is held by something greater than ourselves. Her talk on an ‘Introduction to Religious Experience’ enabled us to discover a Divine Love in all our experiences especially in moments of difficulties.

Standing at the “portal of life”, we asked ourselves: ‘Who am I?’ at this point of my journey. Thanks to Sr. Anne Descour for leading us to face our emotions in different realities of our life. When we ask ourselves ‘Who am I?’ it is always in relation to the other. We explored the cycles of effective and non-effective reactions We were given examples of our driving primary emotions, described as the pursuer and withdrawer, which interact like partners in a dance. It was really wonderful to hear her genuine enthusiasm and encouragement for what is transpiring with our life with our community and apostolate. As we move forward and as we grow in our religious life, we must learn and embrace life and live it to the full. We must strive to ascertain how to dance with one another in community making every effort not to step on one another's toes. Every interaction is seen as an opportunity to learn a new dance and to perfect it. Through abiding in God, we have the power to love and we remain in Him.

We are grateful for Sr. Irene, Sr. Marthe and all the translators for making us go beyond barriers and celebrate the gift of our vocation!