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The Still Small Voice

[caption id="attachment_1404" align="alignright" width="200"]Blog by Associate Conni Dubick, OPA Blog by Associate Conni Dubick, OPA[/caption] "But the Lord was not in the wind, nor the earthquake, nor fire, but in a still small voice, and behold a voice said 'what are you doing here, Elijah?' "   (I Kings 19:11-12)  Elijah described it first, then Jesus said "Let anyone with ears to hear, listen."  (Mark 4:23) Associate Candidates in Akron, OH expressed it in their recent discernment retreat conversations.  They claimed that indeed there is "a still small voice" speaking to them.  Amazing, isn’t it?  Elijah, Jesus and Dominican Candidates are all speaking about the voice inside their hearts. John Neafsey asked this question in A Sacred Voice Is Calling: "What does it mean to find and follow a personal calling?  How do we know what we are meant to do with our precious time and talents and treasure during our short lives here on earth?"  His reflection continues to remind us that "the word vocation (vocare - 'to call' and vox - 'voice') is the experience of hearing a call or voice. Vocation is not only about 'me' and my personal fulfillment, but about 'us' and the common good."  Neafsey states that understanding our personal calling is "a big question and a lot is riding on the depth and generosity and courage of our answers to it." Sr. Amy McFrederick, OP and I travel and meet with many Associates throughout the country and listen to their stories, reflections and prayers. We see and hear the evidence that Dominican Associates, women and men, listen to the voice described by Elijah and follow the words that they hear in their hearts. In 2016 Dominicans celebrate the 800th year Jubilee of the Order of Preachers.  Fifty new Associate Candidates from Colorado, Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Ohio, and Tennessee will make formal commitment statements reflecting their Dominican Spirituality. In the midst of their busy careers and/or civic, parish and family ministries, they live Dominican lives. Over three hundred current Associates in those states and other states will renew their commitments to the mission of the Dominican Sisters of Peace this year as well. Associates listen to the still small voice and then add their own voices to the larger Dominican presence. Associates in the Dominican Family are responding to the Chapter Commitments and living the four pillars in their lives extend Dominican Gospel leadership.

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