This week we observe two feasts that are solemn indeed: the Exaltation of the Cross and the Sorrows of Mary. Songs have been playing in my head: “We should glory in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,” and “At the cross her station keeping,” the Stabat Mater. And strangely, a song from back in those early days of Renewal, “Joy is like the Rain.” It’s a bit cheery-bouncy and I’m intrigued by its popping up along with these more solemn considerations. Continue reading →
Following Sister Barbara Harrrington’s fertile images last week of seeds hitching rides to continue spreading life, and of Mendel patiently coaxing new varieties in the monastery garden, I’ve been thinking about the huge transfer of lands that will occur in the coming decade as congregations of women religious approach their completion. Continue reading →
You might as well know it – my spirituality is for the birds! Actually, it’s about what the birds and other creatures of God teach me. Since I’m a Kansas farmer’s daughter, fields, trees, birds, and seasons speak loudly to me. God’s Spirit breathes in the wind, with storm or calm. God’s messengers are many. Who might join me in my backyard sacred space? The other day many doves, a couple squirrels, and lots of sparrows congregated. In the background the chorus of crickets was providing the prelude to my prayer. In reality, it’s more like they let me join them. Every day is different! The sparrow reminds me to be myself – to sing my soul’s own song and not worry about being fancier or better. Continue reading →
As part of the 800th Jubilee of the Order of Preachers, 200 Dominicans from 50 countries gathered in Salamanca, Spain from September 1 through September 5 to participate in the Dominican Jubilee Congress: Dominicans in the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights: Past, Present, and Future.
The Congress explored the link between study and mission, which is central to the Dominican charism of preaching the Gospel. Dominicans including Sisters, friars, nuns, priests, laity, Associates, and academics gathered to learn about the Order’s history of responding to human rights violations and were challenged to continue promoting and defending human rights across the globe. The Congress was held in the Convent of San Esteban in Salamanca. This location was chosen because Francisco de Vitoria, Antonio de Montesinos, and Bartolomé de las Casas, along with their communities, worked for the rights of the indigenous people of Latin American in the 16th century. Continue reading →
One of the best collaborative projects in Dominican life in the U.S. is the Collaborative Dominican Novitiate (CDN) begun in 1989 in St. Louis. Though the CDN has been around a while, each year a new group of novices in community with the co-directors make the year unique. The year is intended to help the novices from different Dominican congregations gather with peers and be immersed in Dominican life. The focus of the year is to provide a quality experience of community life, prayer, study, ministry, exposure to and practice of the charism of preaching and personal growth for the novices of the member congregations. I participated in the 10-month experience a few years ago and remember with gratitude all the many opportunities, people, and insights. I came to know the love of God within and around me in a whole new way. Continue reading →