Assumption Together, lay people from Orléans testify
The Religious of the Assumption have been present in Orléans since 1968, when they merged with the Sisters of the Guardian of the Eucharist. In 2014, the community left the historic site of Faubourg Bourgogne, near the college, to move to the outskirts, in the Argonne district. Friendships began to develop between the sisters and the inhabitants of this multicultural neighbourhood. Gradually, the laity of the parish discovered our charism and Assumption Together took shape, even if it was still informal.
A more open prayer
I know the sisters of the Assumption through our parish Don Bosco. What touched me most about them is the relationship they have with prayer. I was able to see this thanks to the time of prayer of praise and adoration that they offer us every week, and this led me to another way of praying: a prayer that is more open to the world and to others, and taking the time to know how to give thanks, to think of all those around us and to share this in community. It is this aspect that touches me and that I then found in the "retreat in life" that Sister Ghislaine leads. It is really another way of approaching one's relationship with God, all in simplicity, all in dialogue. This is what I think they experience on a daily basis. This is what I found enriching and interesting in contact with the sisters of the Assumption.
The passion to transmit the faith to children
I had the opportunity to get to know the sisters of the Assumption during my catechumenate journey in Orléans. I had the opportunity to work with them on a Bible camp for young children. I was able to set up workshops and different activities with them. What touched me was the way and the means they put in place to transmit their knowledge and their faith to young children. This desire, this passion to be able to give children this type of access to education is what particularly touched me.
Changing society through human relations
I am in charge of the liturgical animation in the parish and we are lucky to have with us the Religious of the Assumption who participate fully in the life of the parish. I have known the Religious of the Assumption for some years, and I understood more deeply the importance of their work by participating with them in a provincial chapter in 2019. And there I saw the dimension of their commitment to society, to the formation of children, to religious formation, how they can help society to evolve. At the parish level, we can take the example of the catechumenate, where it is more a question of human relationships, much more than a simple relationship between catechists and catechumens.
Being part of a big family
I am a pastoral assistant in the parish of Saint John Bosco, where the sisters of the Assumption work in community with us. What I like about the Sisters of the Assumption is that you feel like you are part of a big family. A family open to all, a family that listens and a family that looks at others, at the world. There is also the affection, the joy of working with them, of evolving with them. This spirit, what drives them, and what I like, is the spirit of welcome they have for others. The fact that they welcome us and show us that we are part of their family helps us to go beyond ourselves, to try to move forward with them and above all to turn towards others. As a catechist, I am in touch with education, educating children, but also educating each other. This allows us to understand that faith should not remain a given but something that moves and that we have to share with others. The experience of the sisters allows us to grow in faith, in our trust in God, and to become aware that we also have to go towards others. We have to educate in our turn, to pay attention to others.
Complementarity of vocations, "with as much fullness as possible"
I have been a pastoral assistant at the Assomption Saint-Marc Saint-Aignan establishment since November 2019. When I arrived, I discovered the Assumption, which I did not know. I work in tandem with Sister Isabelle-Eugénie, and we create together. There is a real mutual richness between the two of us. In front of the students, our respective vocations are questioned: she, in her religious vocation, which raises many questions among the young people, and I, in my vocation to marriage, since I am married and a mother with 5 children. These exchanges are always very interesting. I am discovering little by little the message of Marie-Eugénie, and what touches my heart very much and what I try to live is to see the students in their entirety, to help them to bring out "as fully as possible" what they are and what they should be. I am keen to awaken them to this, because unfortunately they are often reduced to their maths and French grades... I find it interesting to be able to make them aware of this.