Saturday, October 17, 2015

Trust Time

Seven 2.0 sisters gathered last evening for a potluck and conversation. It is always a delight to come together and share prayer, food and conversation. Life, hope, dreams and the joy of living religious life are inexhaustible topics of conversation.
At the same time, we also talked about the communication gap that we experience when trying to share these things with the wider religious life community. 
My own community is asking these days to hear our voices as we contemplate our current reality and the coming decades of religious life. We had the opportunity over the summer to gather and to speak decisively about this reality. Yet our elder sisters are having trouble hearing this voice, giving it credence and trusting us with our own future. 
So last night, I believe we took an important step. We cannot wait for this hearing and credence and trust. We come together and nourish the life, hope, dreams and joy of our lives in shared community. We put our lives on the line. We speak decisively. We act courageously. We trust the spirit. We trust time.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

My Friend's Community

Sister Rosalia Meza, middle, with the Verbum Dei Missionary Fraternity, talks to two novices, Tamara Gillies, left, and Laryn Kovalik in the chapel where she is leading a retreat in Tracy, Calif., on June 10, 2015. Sister Rosalia is one of three nuns living in the convent at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Long Beach.
Check out the great article about the community: click here.
I have the privilege of working with one of the sisters at a workshop I will be doing in mid-October on new and emerging religious life for the Canon Law Society of America.
This community is just one of the many new and emerging signs of life and hope in religious life today.
When I get home, I will be enjoying a potluck with young and middle-aged sisters in the St. Louis area. It is an opportunity to share this particular place of religious life today.
Sure, there is aging, and diminishment and dying. And we do need to take time to attend to this, and in my ministry, I have the privilege of accompanying these communities down the road.
At the same time, there are signs of life and hope, and it is important to realize that both are part of this wonderful adventure we call religious life.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Economic questions...

"Zinn says Pope Francis is challenging women religious in a different way: to continue serving those who are on the margins because that's where he serves, as well." Read more....

In response to this article, my friend Sr. Susan Wilcox challenged us with some questions about how we value ministry these days.

Many religious congregations are facing mounting costs of care for growing numbers of elderly sisters. We can find ourselves turning to the sisters in active ministry to earn a salary to cover their cost of care. But this leads us to question the purpose of ministry: to earn a salary, or to carry on the mission of Jesus? In the best of situations it is both. But some sisters feel that they are not able to serve where they are most needed, because there is little or no compensation for it.

How can we meet the growing needs for care for elderly religious and still allow sisters to minister where they are most needed? And how will these sisters be cared for when they are elderly themselves? These are questions that challenge us to rediscover the balance between earning our daily bread and going to the margins to serve a world in need.