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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Back on the Blog

We came home Sunday night from the retreat and the Province Assembly/Chapter and I spent yesterday just getting back to normal life. The retreat was great - a good talk by one of the four who made up the Retreat Team years ago for the first "Hearts on Fire" retreat. There was prayer and the talk at 9:00 each morning followed by silent prayer until 4:45 Liturgy (one day we had a holy hour and another day the Sacrament of Reconciliation with three priests).  The first night we had a prayer that asked us why we had come to the retreat and what were our expectations. I realized that I not only wanted to be there praying with 85 other RSCJs, but I was looking forward to eight days of silence to just be with Jesus; it was also a good preparation for the Assembly/Chapter as I had time to discern and pray over our recent formation booklet and the Constitutions.

The first day was all on Prayer and the Interior Life as St. Madeleine Sophie was convinced that both were essential for the Society of the Sacred Heart. On the second day we spent the morning at the old convent in Florissant where St. Philippine Duchesne lived in the tiny cubbyhole under the stairs. We had a talk on simplicity and our mission and we were able to visit all three floors of the convent and the museum before heading back - this was a highlight of the retreat and I not only felt closer to Philippine, but renewed my determination to write the life of Lucile Mathevon who came from France who was a pupil at Grenoble and received as a novice there when Philippine was head of the school and in charge of the house. When Philippine left for America in 1818, Lucile made her final profession and had to wait until 1821 to set out for America with Xavier Murphy. Lucile then lived with Philippine at the same convent in Florissant until Philippine left her in charge of the house in 1827 when Philippine opened the City House in St. Louis. So, Florissant has rekindled my desire to write the life of Lucile!

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