Sunday, July 29, 2018

How are we doing Blessed Marie?

      All is not so quiet in the secluded suburban park.
       Traffic distant
        Green junipers point like leafy sentinels straight skywards.
        singing robin, drumming downy
blue sky
butterflies of white
Flowers materialized out of the hardest of winters.
 In just three days the everlasting torrential wind sweeping rains ceased.
         And on schedule as in our Creator’s plan.

 Hope was born

joy in life’s newness
awe at the core.
Wonder amidst tragedies
A renewed spirit pervades and spirits rise in unrehearsed dance of jubilation.  Our hearts become more open.  And our minds can see more clearly now.

We  people on earth and its  other inhabitants find a touch of God’s mercy amidst our troubles and tragedies.   People suffering from cold and hunger.  All seemed like a grey, bad mood.  THEN  Wow.  In 10 days the world turned both pastel and vibrant.  Birds engaged in song.  Oh the glory.  Perhaps the most dramatic and sweetest arrival of spring in decades.

          So what has this to do with lay associates or our beloved Sisters?  Many have been reaching out in their own parishes for a long time, but this year groups have voluntarily been with the Sisters working joyfully by their sides. 

           Example: on a late  April morning the Dominican Sisters and their lay associates headed out among the ancient trees and rocks of Dighton.    Winter had taken a heavy toll.  But these intrepid souls were determined to have this sacred space prepared for others.  A simple gesture by people tired from a full week of work performed some heavy work in an act of selfless charity.    They were also unknowingly establishing a living community of love:(the fruit of their reverence and study put into action.)  
         What would Blessed Marie Poussepin think of  her far distant followers?  Would this intelligent, capable business woman who stressed charity through service be pleased? From the page of the wonderful little book, A Face of god, we can learn more than enough about this amazing lady than we might from such a small pamphlet.
    Some of her wisdom and spirit come through the following examples.  The list is far from  complete: 
                   We know of her caring for the very ill Marie Olivier, the poor sick widow whom Marie   supported in her own room  until that lady’s death way back in 1694.
She answered the demands of grace which were maturing her soul in Dourdan.
When faced with anxiety about the future of her community , she hoped against hope keeping on with her foundation with steadfastness with only one support :  her blind surrender to the ways of Providence who as she said inspired her project:  It is solely the work of Providence…..the work of God who used such a weak creature”    
She wanted serious asceticism and practice of basic evangelical virtues, but wanted them to be practiced in joy and freedom of spirit.