Ten discerners and four women in formation, along with associates and sisters from the Vocations Team and Houses of Welcome gathered together to pray in the companionship of Mary on May 17, 2020, as part of our Marian Virtual Mini-Retreat. We prayed with the story of the Visitation and Mary’s Magnificat. The retreat started with a prayer that was taken from our Dominican Praise, then Candidate Annie shared about her discernment in the light of images of Mary in the medieval art, and then Sr. Bea shared her reflection on the Visitation and Mary’s Magnificat. Participants then had the opportunity to pray with what they have heard and to reflect with questions and with other hands-on prayerful activities (such as the one decade rosary bracelet or paper flower pictured.) We shared about our faith experiences, and then prayed the rosary together.
Each woman shared something unique about their reflection time – whether it was
- taking the words of the “Hail Mary, Gentle Woman” song to heart,
- or allowing Mary’s questions work in her like we heard it in the “Nativity story” movie: “why is it that God chose me?” and “how is he [Joseph] going to believe this?” which very much resonated with God’s call for her life,
- or praying with the quotes from the reflection,
- or reflecting on the Visitation with an image of Elizabeth as Mary’s ‘wisdom’ figure and how it resonated with her spiritual journey with her mentor,
- or expressing her gratitude toward her best friend and a sister, who are like Elizabeth in the story,
- or writing her Magnificat on the flower-petals that unfolded when placed in water.
As I think back about the retreat, I feel that the insights that the participants shared helped me gain a deeper meaning and more perspectives to pray with the Visitation story. We hope that it was a fruitful opportunity for all of us to take Mary’s example and companionship to heart, and thus to bring us into a closer relationship with God.
If you are interested participating in our next event, click here for more information about our Mission for Peace experience.