‘A time to be filled with gratitude and thanksgiving’ MV
On Saturday 10 December eighty-five Sisters gathered at ‘Mercy Place’ for the celebration of our annual Advent Prayer Ritual and the sharing of an early Christmas meal.
The time of reflection focussed on three themes. It affirmed our experience of the Jubilee Year of Mercy. It acknowledged our journey through Advent to Christmas and invited Sisters to engage with the living of the eight Corporal and Spiritual Work of Mercy. Time was spent in communal prayer, quiet individual reflection, table conversation, song and listening to the Word of God.
Pope Francis, in September of this year, proposed a complement to the two traditional sets of seven Works of Mercy. The gift of the 2017 Congregation Calendar to each Sister provided the text of this eighth work and calls each Sister to ‘grateful contemplation of God’s world which allows us to discover in each thing, a teaching God wishes to hand to us’ and ‘in simple daily gestures to break with the logic of violence, exploitation and selfishness to build a better world’. The concluding words of the ritual reminded Sisters that our whole life is a response to a call - the call of the Gospel to the service of Mercy and that each Advent invites us to stillness and waiting upon this call anew.
The ritual was followed by a celebratory meal at which the Sisters enjoyed Christmas fare and conversation.