Tuesday, August 4, 2009
I am back and ready to share with all my readers some of the highlights of my week of meetings in Chicago at Loyola University. The first days were with a group of about thirty-two Religious of the Sacred Heart who are engaged in Higher Education. It was a wonderful time to share our common mission as most of us work alone in different Universities although there are a good group of RSCJs at the University of San Diego and a couple at CTU in Chicago. We had time to pray together, to share, and to work on common goals and criteria that would apply to whatever work we are doing in Higher Education.
The Higher Education meeting ended shortly after noon to give us time to prepare to help with the registration for the 220 RSCJs ( including some international guests and some Provincial staff) arriving for the United States Provincial Assembly/Chapter that same afternoon. We began officially with a lovely ceremony where each area blessed the water brought from the area's most identifying body of water(Mississippi river, Biscayne Bay for Miami, Lake Michigan, etc.) I was the representative for the Miami area who came forward and poured the water into one bowel so that all the areas were mingled. This was so symbolic of all that followed! When RSCJs get together it is a real "Cor Unum" - we love seeing each other, sharing, and praying together.
The committees that planned the Assembly and the great prayer services and Liturgies did a fabulous job. We met at 8:30 each morning for prayer and then worked all day with a Liturgy at 5:00 on two of the days and I wonderful closing Liturgy on Sunday morning. All this may not be of interest to my readers, but I will need to process still all that we did during the assembly. I am just grateful to be able to belong to the Society of the Sacred Heart and one of the graces of the week was being with RSCJs from other countries! Our Mother General was present with one of the Central Team; our former Mother General was there, too. There were also RSCJS from Australia, Canada, Scotland, Poland, Africa, Puerto Rico, Haiti, Colombia, England,etc. It is always thrilling to hear all the great work we are doing in all parts of the world.
One of our young nuns is going to Chile from September to June for an international experience so I met with her to share some of my love for that country and the people. It was just a great week, but very tiring. More tomorrow about the content! You will get much from looking at the website, rscj.org listed on the right.