by Sister Mary Frances Reis, VHM
Greetings and, on behalf of all the Sisters, a most Blessed New Year to everyone “in the Cave and in the Cosmos”! Advent 2017 was a precious and sacred moment in our community (you can catch a glimpse in this blog). Believe it or not, we are now journeying with the Magi to the Solemnity of the Epiphany, and yes, we’ll be tucking away the decorations and décor of the Season for another year!
The month of December brought hope and joy to the children and parents of our neighborhood community. Sponsor a Family MN, Visitation School in Mendota, the St. Thomas Beckett and St. Girard faith communities, and dozens of others made it happen. All culminated with a combined prayer-service-and-Santa-visit at our Fremont house… which brings me to the New Year!
For the new year, we have chosen our overarching theme:
Home, in its many dimensions.
Wendy Wright, Salesian scholar and friend, puts it succinctly:
“The Home as an image can reflect a sense of identity and meaning-making that contains within itself a clue to the way we understand ourselves in the world.”
This theme of home will begin with the living spaces of the Sisters at Fremont and Girard. We want to make whatever adjustments necessary to ensure that we remain a place of unconditional welcome and prayer, and at the same time attend to the care of our Sisters. What this means in reality is for the Holy Spirit to share! Keep tuned!
We are in relationship with many home communities in the neighborhood, with those who open their doors to shelter the homeless and those who struggle to have a roof over their heads. As we look at our own living space, we need to be attentive to those who yearn for affordable housing for their families.
Early in the new year, we will begin to address issues surrounding our focus on home. Both through advocacy and through sharing of our resources, we hope to make a small contribution to the housing crisis in our own city. Please join us in prayer and action as we move forward. We’ll keep you posted on the unfolding. We are deeply grateful for your partnership with us!