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Diamond Jubilee Celebrated for two New Glasgow CND Sisters

On August 27, 2014 the parishioners of All Saints Pastoral Unit gathered in Saint John the Baptist Church to honor Sisters Anne Marie MacKenzie and Mary Joan MacDonald on the occasion of their Diamond Jubilee of profession to the Congregation de Notre Dame. In keeping with our Associate Relationship Mission and Vision Statement the Associates of Pictou/New Glasgow gathered with New Victoria Associates Gerald and Winnie Odo to live “mutuality in visitation”. The celebrant was Fr. Gary MacPherson who highlighted the word “yes” many times in his congratulatory words to both these wonderful Sisters who have given so much over the past 60 years to those they shared time with on this journey. Here are their words of sentiment: To Fr. Gary, the parishioners, the CWL, the choir and to all who were so kind in acknowledging our Diamond Jubilee. We deeply appreciate the prayers, warm wishes, the gifts received, and your abiding presence to us, not only during our celebration, but throughout the years. God bless you for your thoughtfulness, and know that you are in our prayers.

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Associates Celebrate in Thanksgiving for the Safe Return of Sister Gilberte

Warm autumn greetings to everyone! We were pleased to receive your submissions for this Newsletter and hear about how you celebrated in thanksgiving for the freedom and release of Sr. Gilberte Bussière, Frs Gianpaolo Marta and Gianantonio Allegri.

Halifax, Sydney area, Woodstock

Halifax: Celebration of Thanksgiving
Submitted by: Frankie McCormack

On the warm sunny Friday, Sept. 5, our Halifax CND Associates and Sister met at the beautiful home of Bernadette and Michael Fegan at The Head of St. Margaret’s Bay. What a special spot to be gathered in the open concept kitchen, living room-dining room, looking out through the many, large windows at the beauty of nature.

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NERA gathering

NERA, the New England Religious and Associate group, will hold its 20th gathering, Saturday, Nov. 1, 9:00 am to 3:30 pm in Holyoke, MA.  The theme is A Look Back – A Step Forward.  Associates and Sisters from throughout New England exchange ideas and make connections.  If anyone is interested in attending, please contact Sr. Joan at cndassociatesusa@msn.com, by October 16. 

Workshop and book-signing event - November 15

Save-the-Date!  Peggy and Mary Ann Rossi are hoping that as many as possible will be at Wilton on Saturday, November 15, 2014  to attend a workshop and book-signing event sponsored by the  SSND's. The day will be a kick-off celebration of the 2015-Year of Consecrated Life. The workshop begins in the morning and ends with Mass at 4PM.  The authors of New Generations of Catholic Sisters: The Challenge of Diversity are well-worth hearing! Engaging in their presentation, they offer an informative and eye-opening understanding of the present and future for women religious of this century.

October 18: Notre Dame Academy Homecoming!

NOTRE DAME ACADEMY HOMECOMING is October 18th. Sr. Natalie Gannon will be honored this year. If any CND would like to attend the afternoon tea, Mass and dinner, please contact Sr. Patricia Corley.

Synod Bishops on the family

The Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod Bishops on the family takes place in Rome from October 5 to 19. The theme of this synod is The pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelization.

Pope Francis has invited all of us in the universal Church to unite in prayer for this significant event and the following prayer has been offered to us. Let us pray in communion with the Bishops at the synod and with all people of good will.

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CND at the People’s Climate March in New York

October 1: Feast Day of Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus

“Thine Arms, then, O Jesus, are the lift which must raise me up even unto Heaven. To get there I need not grow; on the contrary, I must remain little, I must become still less.” Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus

The Story of a Soul (L'Histoire d'une Âme): The Autobiography of St. Thérèse.

St. Thérèse of Lisieux

http://books.google.ca/books?id=PC-Vy0Ool0EC&q=thine+arms#v=snippet&q=thine%20arms&f=false

Thanks and Appreciation – Diamond jubilees

Just a note to thank everyone who acknowledged my Diamond Jubilee via a gracious note, lovely card and greeting, flowers or the celebration of an anniversary Mass. I was truly touched to be remembered in such ways and thank you for your thoughtfulness and many kindnesses. May your goodness rebound on you a hundredfold!

Joan Trudeau, CND

We wish to express our deepest gratitude to all who remembered us on the occasion of our Diamond Jubilee. For all your mass offerings, telephone calls, letters, cards, etc… We say thank you to all of you.

Hazel Power, CND and Carmelita MacDonald, CND

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Coady International Institute

Jenna Kyte and Kathleen Provost, Representatives from Coady, Antigonish, NS, met with members of the leadership team on Tuesday, September 9, 2014. Visitation Province annually sponsors a student in the Development Leadership Diploma program. This year we are sponsoring Sister Philomina Joseph, Coordinator of Women’s Empowerment Program, Diocese of Varanasi Social Welfare Society, India. She organizes activities for the integral development of women and adolescent girls to safeguard the dignity of women, and to become the voice of the voiceless. As coordinator she is involved in planning, monitoring, evaluating and networking at the organizational level. Sister Philo’s hope in coming to Coady is to learn new leadership skills and techniques to empower women and adolescents to strengthen their bargaining power for positive change. Let us keep Sister Philo in our prayer. For more info on Coady: http://www.coady.stfx.ca Sister Philomena Joseph

Climate March and International Day of Peace Gathering in Charlottetown

Several of us joined a group in front of Province House at noon on Sunday, September 21, to unite in solidarity with people around the world on this special day of the Climate March and International Day of Peace. The theme of our gathering emphasized the link between environmental stewardship, social justice, community celebration and peace. Emphasis was placed on the strengthening of this link if our dream of healing a planet in crisis is to be realized. Groups present included the Council of Canadians, the Island Peace Committee and Earth Action.

The event consisted of several speeches, entertainment relevant to the purpose of the gathering, and a short walk in union with those around the world who were walking. Sister Anne Gillis explained to the group our Congregation of Notre Dame involvement in these issues on a worldwide basis.

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Advent Weekend Guided Retreat

ROTHESAY, NB - Friday, November 28, 7 pm – Sunday, November 30, noon

Facilitator: Becky McKenna, CND

Welcoming Emmanuel, God’s Presence Among Us

To register, please contact Villa Madonna toll free at 1-866-783-3300 or

Email: villamadonna@nb.aibn.com

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Visitation Province Associates' Report at Central Committee

After we presented our report, others were asked to share what impacted them in what they heard. Here are their responses:

  • A community that radiates the charism of Marguerite Bourgeoys from sea to sea
  • Great concern for little ones and our planet
  • That prayer is most important to our Associates
  • A very great awareness of over-consumerism and also the importance of buying locally
  • The values of Marguerite like justice and peace and held dearly in each heart
  • Global awareness and involvement
  • A community that is proud to bring Marguerite’s light to the next generation
  • Solidarity in commitment to CND Heritage and justice issues
  • A very much alive group, prayerful in solidarity with everyone, being detached from consumerism and at the service of others
  • A community with deep trust as they embrace the future
  • Very open to internationally living simplicity of life
  • Dynamic and connected to one another and the world

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Published talks from the Spring Conference of the Religious of Ireland

The Spring Conference of the Religious of Ireland (CORI) entitled, "Religious Life Evolving: Faithful and Free," has published two talks given by their keynote speakers. Sister Pat Farrell, OSF, and Sister Sandra Schneiders, IHM kindly allowed their lectures to be published in full on the CORI wesite http://www.cori.ie

The talks are entitled: 'Sustaining Transformation' and 'The Ongoing Challenge of Renewal in Contemporary Religious Life'.

Someone recommended these talks to me and I know that they gave me lots to ponder and a desire to have further conversation about them with others.

They are available on the CORI website as well as other interesting material. Enjoy the splendor of this Fall!

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A BIG Concert and a BIG Social Justice Symposium

A BIG Concert and a BIG Social Justice Symposium happened last weekend in Charlottetown celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Cooper Institute and honouring one of their deceased founding members, Father Andrew MacDonald. The concert was a delightful range of local talent, from a beautiful Creation dance by a young Aboriginal man to a toe-tapping selection of Acadian fiddling, dancing and singing by three Acadian women including Sister Marie L. Arsenault’s niece. The Symposium included a presentation by Pasma Chandra, a policy analyst from Ottawa who outlined how BIG (Basic Income Guarantee) affects democracy and work. A panel including a representative from Cooper Institute, PEI council of People with Disabilities and the Advisory Council on the Status of Women shared their perspectives on the benefits of BIG.

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Climate March Success – It took Everyone and we were there!

It took Everyone and we were there! Maura McGrath, CND, Apraham Nizibliam (CND Social Justice Network) and Monica Lambton (JPIC) are back home in Montreal after an exhilarating weekend in New York for the People's Climate March. We grouped with a dozen Blessed Sacrament CNDs and a JPIC colleague from the Sisters of Providence in Kingston to join with the thousands gathered for the Inter-Faith contingency of the March. Hundreds of thousands surrounded us on the streets and we truly felt immersed in hope and joy. We are at a KAIROS moment, we could feel it in New York, and we can see it in our work at the CND. See this link for a very short video on what happened in New York and around the world http://peoplesclimate.org/wrap-up/ Check out First Class for pictures and details on what happened at the March in New York and at the United Nations. And don't forget to send me news and pictures from the Climate March events that you participated in!

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Breaking the Silence Network Celebrates 25 Years of Solidarity

Maritimes-Guatemala

Breaking the Silence (BTS) is a voluntary network of people in the Maritimes who in 1988 began to organize to support the efforts of Guatemalans struggling for political, social and economic justice.

On Wednesday, September 10th our administration team welcomed Kathryn Anderson, founding member, and Sister Mary Corbett, CND, long-time member and supporter, to give us an overview of the very important work of this network. Through their informative presentation we heard how closely connected the Congregation of Notre Dame Sisters have been with the work of BTS since its beginning days. Mary has been involved in Project Accompaniment and has led many delegations to Guatemala since the 1990’s. We have supported many of the young interns in participating in this leadership and solidarity program through our CND bursaries. They continue to share their gifts here in Canada. Kathryn reminds us: “As you in the Congregation of Notre Dame well know, the work of solidarity is not finished.”

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Canadian Forum on Theology and Education

The Canadian Forum on Theology and Education is planning a two- day event with the participation of Joan Chittister, OSB and Diarmud O’Murchu, MSC. The event is to take place April 1-2, 2016 at the Ukrainian Catholic Conference Centre in Oakville, Ontario. To ensure the success of this event and the presence of a sufficient number of participants, the Canadian Forum on Theology and Education is requesting pre-registrations now to guarantee registration. No money is required before 2016.

The event will take place only if there is a significant number of participants. For more information, see the Forum’s website at http://www.cfotae.ca/Registration-Future.php

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Associate Relationship News

This summer was a time of transitioning into new responsibilities for two area co-coordinators of Associate Relationship in Visitation Province. We gratefully welcome Karen Volpe, for the Central Region and Marjorie Allison-Ross, for the Eastern Region. Once again we extend our thanks to Ann Gotfryd and Phyllis Gallant, CND for their generous and creative service over many years. Visitation Province area co-coordinators and Nina Glinski, CND, liaison for the leadership team, will meet October 5-7, at the Motherhouse.

Ann Gotfryd and Adèle Mercier organized a productive Central Committee Meeting August 7-10 at which our Visitation Province associates gave their combined report in response to 7 questions that dealt with “Telling Our Stories, Who Do We Say We Are?”

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Days of Retreat . . .

The Visitation Province Administration Team met at Seton Spirituality Centre in Terence Bay, Nova Scotia, September 2nd – 5th for shared days of retreat. Becky McKenna, CND offered short daily reflections that drew us into times of silence as well as deep sharing.

Recalling the wisdom of eco-theologian Thomas Berry, C.P., Becky suggested that we “look to Earth for guidance.” It is the source from which we come and within this web of life we find all the courage, strength and wisdom that we need to live our lives with meaning and integrity. During our days of retreat we were invited to “Come to the Water,” to know the replenishing powers of the ocean and its buoyancy, the capacity to hold us safely despite the storms. This was followed by a day of contemplating the coastal gardens all around us, wondering at the ways in which we too cultivate life, plot resurrection and delight in being part of this amazing life system.

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