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Reflection for the Visitation Mass

Initially, I was surprised when I heard myself volunteer to give this reflection, especially as I consider how truly inspirational and wise the messages emanating from this podium have been. However, I now realize that it was a spirit-led moment that the newest among you might offer some words on today’s feast. I’ll explain why, starting in 33 BCE and following that up with a little bit of physics.

We often think of the Mary of the annunciation story as a quiet, demure, and obedient young girl, but being a young girl, she was likely also energetic, bubbly, and joyful. She did what her parents said, and then when an angel appeared, we imagine that this angelic young girl obediently gave her ‘yes’. How sweet.

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Our Father who art in heaven

Among the many activities of June, in addition to weddings, graduations, and the beginning of summer, Father’s Day takes on a special significance. This year four first grade girls revealed something to me about the meaning of fatherhood; and, in particular, an insight into God as our Father.

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News from Blessed Sacrament Province (USA)

From Our Leadership Team

During our May 11-13 meeting we watched Sharing the Vision: A Dialogue on Religious Life Today and into the Future, an excellent video presentation by the officers of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) at the International Union of Superiors General (UISG) in Rome. We invite you to view it—if possible with others—at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VEtO4cV67q4&feature=youtu.be and if you do, don’t skip the questions and comments at the end—some of the best parts are there, especially the section on vocations!

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News from Visitation Province (Canada)

Retreat at Andrews of Charlottetown

We spent three grace-filled days of retreat with Sister Denise Bérubé from May 22-24. The theme dealt mainly with the compassion of Jesus, our call to compassion and the ministry of presence. Denise’s gentle, reflective approach, her use of sacred music, appropriate handouts and a well-balanced schedule all contributed to a prayerful experience. We were fortunate to have daily Mass with our chaplain, Father Bob Coady. We are grateful to God and to Denise for her precious ministry.

Réjeanne Bourque, CND

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Sr. Libby Osgood Accepted to Profess First Vows

It is with great joy and gratitude that we share with you the news that Sr. Libby Osgood has been accepted to profess First Vows in the Congrégation de Notre-Dame of Montreal. 

Please continue to hold Libby in prayer as she prepares to deepen her commitment to live the mystery of the Visitation as a professed member of the CND.

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Meeting of women in the parish of Santa Bárbara, Honduras

This meeting was a collective experience lived from a perspective of the faith and the daily reality of women.

Five years ago we began to meet once a month with some village coordinators. We also meet, once a year, with eighty to one hundred women from different villages to celebrate and share our rural women ministry.

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Angels In Our Midst - Going To The Peripheries

On a Tuesday, a friend invited me to accompany her to the Friendship Room, which is an outreach of the Salvation Army. They serve coffee, donuts, muffins, etc. to people who drop-in. I knew very little about this ministry and was eager to learn more so I accepted.

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Anniversary Of First Visitation Province Associate Assembly

The first Visitation Province Associate Assembly became a reality one year ago and is now part of our Associate Relationship history. Forty-six associates and fourteen sisters from across Visitation Province as well as two associates from Blessed Sacrament Province participated in this special Gathering.

We chose as the theme, “On Fire for Mission,” which was so appropriate for the gathering that was held on Pentecost Sunday. It was also close to the Feast of the Visitation so sisters renewed their vows and associates their commitment to Associate Relationship at Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Chapel.

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Celebration Of The Eucharist

The Sisters and Associates invite you to join them in the Celebration of the Eucharist in anticipation of the 400th birthday of their foundress, St. Marguerite Bourgeoys, on Sunday, June 16 at 10:30 am at St. Dunstan’s Basilica in Charlottetown.

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First Annual Sister Margaret MacDonell Prize In Gaelic Poetry Awarded

The Department of Celtic Studies at St. Francis Xavier University, in partnership with the Clan Donald Lands Trust, is pleased to announce an annual Gaelic poetry competition named in honour of Sister Margaret MacDonell, CND, former chair of the StFX Celtic Studies Department and lifelong champion of the Gaelic language. An award ceremony was held May 10th, 2019 during Gaelic Month in Nova Scotia.

The inaugural recipients of the Sister Margaret MacDonell Prize in Gaelic Poetry were first prize Brìan MacLeòid, second prize Goiridh Dòmhnullach, and third prize Deborah Moffatt. StFX Celtic Studies Department Chair Dr. Michael Linkletter presented the prize.

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Presentation of the Mosaic at the Motherhouse

On Wednesday, May 15, during the regular afternoon coffee break, the Mosaic art piece, the contribution of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame to the international Sowing Hope for the Planet project was unveiled to a full and expectant dining-room. The Congregational Leadership Team was present along with Motherhouse staff, Montreal area Sisters and Associates from Visitation Province and Becky McKenna and Catherine Walker who were visiting Montreal and area this past week. We were joined by the artist, Claire Jacmin-Park who shared some reflections about her creative process. CND Social Justice Coordinator Bineta Ba introduced the project.  Project Committee member Monica Lambton also spoke, along with Congregation Leader Sr. Agnes Campbell who had just returned from UISG meetings in Rome. She shared with us her joy in seeing an image of the Mosaic and the name of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame in the slide presentation during the plenary there. The original Mosaic will be on display at the Motherhouse. It is hoped that this will be a resource for us long term as we draw on what we encounter in the images and meaning portrayed there.

 

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A Celebration of Visitation

Leader:  As we come together today to celebrate the Feast of the Visitation, we call upon Mary, our mother in Faith and our Foundress, and ask her guidance as we strive to incarnate the Word in our world.

Opening Song:  In the Footsteps of Mary (from Visitation – K. Deignan, CND and M.A. Foley, CND)

In the footsteps of Mary we love to find the inspiration of our lives, hidden with Christ in God.

The life Mary led throughout her time on earth was the life of poverty:  a way of mystery like the Pasch of Jesus.

The life Mary led throughout her time on earth was a life of incomparable love—unified, transparent, and deep.

The life Mary led throughout her time on earth was the life of an apostle, first herald of the gospel.

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News from Visitation Province (Canada)

Congrégation de Notre-Dame Receives Honorary Degree At Stfx Spring Convocation

Sr. Rebecca McKenna, CND, was at the StFX University Spring Convocation on May 5th to receive an Honorary Degree on behalf of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame for its work in liberating education.

This award acknowledges that the lives of the sisters truly made a difference, and contributed to the common mission at StFX, Sr. Rebecca says. It recognizes the part the CND played in the larger story, especially in expanding the parameters of education for women. You can watch the live-streaming of the convocation at:

https://www.stfx.ca/student-life/convocation/spring-convocation

The presentation to the Congrégation de Notre-Dame is in the afternoon ceremony. [Approximate time 1:40:16]

Catherine Walker, CND, with members of the administration team

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Pastoral Services Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Chapel - Spring-Summer 2019

Photo: Marie-Claire Dugas

Group activities (minimum 15 persons)

Guided visit

Guided visit of the chapel with someone from the pastoral team, guided visit of the crypt, the Museum, the chapel up in the clouds and the belvedere. Visit of the temporary exposition at your own pace. We can modify your visit to meet your needs.

Take advantage of your group visit to discover our new temporary exposition starting June 21st, 2019: COLLE PAPIER CISEAUX: The life and works of Claude Lafortune. Come admire, for the very first time at the Marguerite Bourgeoys Museum, the paper sculpture representing Jesus as well as L’Évangile en papier !

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Mothers

Photo: Marie-Claire Dugas

God, you have created and nurtured us as a mother, we bless you and give you thanks.

Mothers living here or in eternity, bless our God.

Mothers of happy, healthy children, bless our God.

Mothers of ill or troubled children, bless our God.

Mothers of well fed and cared for children, bless our God.

Mothers of abused children, bless our God.

Mothers of hungry children, bless our God.

Mothers of children of freedom, bless our God.

Mothers of children of oppression, bless our God.

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News from Visitation Province (Canada)

Mosaic by Claire Jacmin-Park

Congrégation de Notre-Dame Contribution to Sowing Hope for the Planet Campaign

With a desire to highlight and share with each other how Religious Communities are bringing the message of Laudato Sí to life, the UISG in Rome initiated the Sowing Hope for the Planet campaign.

By participating in the Campaign, we are continuing in our commitment to care for our Common Home. The Campaign will enrich our reflection, consolidate our actions and initiate new actions.

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UPEI heads to KAIROS Atlantic!

Photo: Lois, Dawne (KAIROSAtlantic planning committee and UPEI Mawi-omi staff), Seanna, Alexia

Streams of Justice: KAIROS Atlantic Gathering 2019, May 2 – 5, 2019 at Mount Allison University in Sackville, NB.

Follow the adventure on social media using #KAIROSAtlantic and #KAIROSAtlanticPEI

Also our delegates are publishing a blog. Click here to follow along!

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News from Visitation Province (Canada)

Earth Day Celebration

On Monday evening, several Sisters of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame attended a Musical Evening to celebrate the beauties and wonders of Our Common Home, Planet Earth. This was presented by the Martha Spirituality Centre, and included a variety of music, song and dance, all related to Mother Earth. The program was inspirational and thought-provoking, and was much appreciated by an enthusiastic audience.

Marie Hagen, CND

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Honorary Degree For the Congrégation de Notre-Dame

St. Francis Xavier University Spring Convocation to celebrate new milestones for graduates, honorary degree recipients and award winners

Antigonish, Nova Scotia – It is one of the biggest celebratory days of the year at St. Francis Xavier University. After four years of hard work and dedication, a new generation of leaders will leave St. FX to carve out new pathways.

On May 5, more than 900 St. FX graduates will receive degrees. Morning and afternoon ceremonies will be celebrated with family, relatives and friends.

Two honorary degrees will be bestowed during Spring Convocation. During the morning ceremony, Dr. Stan Kutcher, a leading psychiatrist and professor, will be honoured for his work in helping manage major mental illnesses in youth. In the afternoon, The Congrégation de Notre-Dame will be recognized for its work in the value of liberating education to create a more just society.

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Social Justice News from Visitation Province

The “Periphery” Reaching Out To The Periphery

“They still bring forth fruit in old age, they are ever full of sap and green.” (Psalm 92:15)

We are certainly part of the “periphery!” We live in a seniors’ retirement home. Our average age is 85. Braces, canes, walkers and wheelchairs are part of our every-day reality. Some of us need help in personal care to various degrees. Some have physical or mental disabilities. Our sisters remain here until death. Yes, we fit into the peripheral category! “How then shall we live?”

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