A PICTURE IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS!

by Sr. Mary Frances Reis, VHM

A life in abundance! Women's Spring Retreat at St. Jane House

Life in abundance: Women’s Spring Retreat at St. Jane House

As I was checking out some pics on my digital camera, it occurred to me that we have such a life of abundance here in North Minneapolis…An abundance that spills over into Easter Alleluias!  An abundance that flowers into life giving relationships…an abundance that reaches across town to bring folks together that might not every meet!  Enjoy a few photos of some of our springtime activities.

 I thank Melissa for sharing this collage of pictures with you that includes:

  • Our St. Patrick’s Day celebration with our Nigerian Sisters who work tirelessly at Sharing and Caring Hands. (Did you know that St. Patrick is the patron of Nigeria?!;
  • A 20 year old tradition that originated at St. Thomas Church in  Eagan in which our families meet their families, pray together, share wonderful family Easter baskets filled with household good , and yes some goodies!;
  • Neighborhood helpers putting labels on our newsletter;
  • Our Women’s overnight retreat at the St. Jane House;
  • Children earning camperships to Catholic Youth Camp by participating in the neighborhood clean-up; And….
  • Easter Sunday visitors who received a bag of bunny treats, and a whole box of Girl Scout cookies, thanks for Soledad whose family donated boxes and boxes of these delicious treats.  Can you imagine a child trying to choose his/her favorite cookie?!
  • Finally, the Eucharistic altar where it all begins!!!!!

Our extended community reaches far and wide.  Thanks you for making our life so abundant…

To see snapshots from these Spring Photos, click here.

Marsha’s Musings….Insights to Monastic Life

Ms. Marsha West, MIE participant

Ms. Marsha West, MIE participant

The following post by Marsha West, Monastic Immersion Participant, was excerpted from her blog, “Marsha’s Musings.” Click here to read this in its entirety and see her photo documentation of life at Visitation Monastery north Minneapolis.

Saturday morning in the neighborhood-North Minneapolis

Sr. Mary Frances calls the group to prayer before starting distributing door prizes at the conclusion of our party.

Sr. Mary Frances calls the group to prayer before starting distributing door prizes at the conclusion of our party.

August, 2012

Visitation Monastery follows a regular schedule: we gather together four times every day to pray the Divine Office. Morning prayer on weekdays is at 7. On Saturdays it’s at 8, and on Sundays 8:30. We either have a mass celebrated here at the Monastery or we go out to a neighboring parish. On Saturday mornings we generally have a Communion Service. Dinner is at 6:15. But in and around those regularly scheduled practices, all sorts of other things happen. THIS Saturday, August 25, was one such day!

So this Saturday morning, we gathered at 8, and several neighbors and friends joined us. We had a busy morning planned since the annual Back-to-School party was scheduled to begin at 1 PM.

But there was more! The Urban League sponsored a community parade which came down Girard Street where I am living. It was a great little community parade – with lots of young people from drum groups, dance companies, politicians leafleting the neighborhood as their supporters marched in their support. A couple of car clubs drove their cool cars, filled with family members and friends, past our house.

CLICK TO READ ON….

Neighborhood Night of Peace-August 1, 2012

Sr. Mary Frances embraces two National Night of Peace Collaborators

Sr. Mary Frances embraces two Neighborhood Night of Peace Collaborators

by Sr. Mary Frances Reis, VHM

“There are so many wonderful initiatives in this community that never get media coverage;  that’s OK, but we want the world to know that the north side is comprised of so many beautiful people who can teach us all a lot about the value of relationship.” — Sr. Mary Frances

Neighborhood Night of Peace is an event the Sisters initiated some 20 years ago.  It grew out of National Night Out (a block by block event) and became a community wide celebration of peace and community.  In recent years this summertime gathering has drawn between 450 and 600 neighbors to Ascension Church’s  parking lot where there is free food, games and prizes for the children, door prizes for the family, and free school supplies for the first 200 children to arrive.  Community friends Eddie Brown and Tommy Williams MC’d the event, as they have done for the past several years.

NNOP2012.lThe most gratifying aspect of the Neighborhood Night of Peace is the partnerships it has generated.  ASCENSION CHURCH, VISITATION MONASTERY, MASJID ANUR, TURNING POINT, KEMPS, ASCESNION PLACE, BASILICA OF SAINT MARY, NEIGHBORS & FRIENDS FROM AROUND THE METRO come together to provide a spectacular evening!

This event could not have happened without the generous participation and support of the Our Lady of the Lakes Mission Group of 30 youth and adults from Spicer, Minnesota.  They arrived at 11:00 am on a huge bus, packed with door prizes, & kiddy games and prizes.  NNOP2012.mAfter a bus tour of the North side conducted by Don Samuels, they spent the entire day (in 90 degree temps) tirelessly setting up and preparing for the evening which began at 5:30.   This group served food, ran games, etc., until they boarded the bus at 7:30 to return to Spicer.  It is our prayer that this bridging experience planted a few seeds, especially in the young people, of the satisfaction of serving.  Like us Sisters, we hope that they received as much and more than they gave!

The NNOP was a great success!  There are so many wonderful initiatives in this community that never get media coverage;  that’s OK, but we want the world to know that the north side is comprised of so many beautiful people who can teach us all a lot about the value of relationship.