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Post-Chapter Reflections

Visitation Province

The Congrégation de Notre-Dame General Chapter began last summer with a retreat with Father Simon-Pierre Arnold setting the tone and helping us arrive at a New Moment – a New Day! In his third session, Father Simon-Pierre invited us to look at the mystery of mission before ‘church’ – to understand what Jesus intended mission to be and what the call is for us today.

Jesus' message is that God’s love and compassion be lived out in the ordinariness of our daily lives. We are called to constantly find new ways to break open the Gospel daily and mirror for each other and for God’s world this Love that is the Reality that defines who we are and directs our lives.

Moreover, as we live into our new mission orientations we are invited to listen more deeply to Jesus’ message, to this inner call to grow into the people we were born to be -- 'to humanize all our relationships'. Isn't that what it is all about? – to be the best human we can be against a horizon of 2016 social justice issues? And in so doing, we transform ourselves and lead the way to transformation for others.

How then shall we live? It's a New Day! Sisters and associates are called to unearth new forms, new language and new approaches to reach others for the sake of Christ in our world as together we bring the future into existence.

Karen Volpe, Associate 

Area Gathering – Fredericton, NB

On Saturday, November 26, sisters and associates of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame gathered at the Ramada Inn in Fredericton, NB. Sister Karen Kelly was joined by Sister Susan Kidd: they shared with us, through photos, songs and personal notes, their experience of the weeks at the General Chapter. Sister Eileen McQuaid came from Moncton; Sister Marie St. Coeur from Miramichi; and Sister Catherine Walker from Bedford were there to lead us through a process in preparation for the Province Chapter next summer. Associates from Miramichi, Moncton and Woodstock joined the Fredericton group, some of whom are currently journeying towards Associate Relationship. How appropriate for all of us to be gathering on this first weekend of Advent in which the first candle on the Advent wreath is lighted to signal hope!

Our presenters were upbeat and positive, welcoming the ideas and input from all of us. We could easily see they experienced new hope and new life at Chapter and they conveyed their enthusiasm to us. On a damp November day we were energized to keep moving forward in hope and joy! It was a great meeting; we are grateful to all who could be there.

Eleanor McCloskey, CND

The Post-Chapter Gathering in Ottawa

"In the Spirit we are one!" So it is said, and so we know from our meeting with enthused reporters Sister Nina Glinski and Karen Volpe and with the articulate "researcher" for the up-coming Visitation Chapter, Sister Debbie Warner. Limbs may have grown numb under the pressure of "sessioning", but spirits ran high at the realization of our growing comfort with the reality of the cosmic dimension of existence and its impact on our spiritual vision and our ensuing response. The twenty of us, sisters and associates, sensed a tightening of the bond among us as we internally concluded that words are limited in scope when compared to "living into Mystery". Our repeated gratitude to the aforementioned trio, to Sisters Louise Dunn, hostess, to Bernie O'Neill and Clara Nasello, providers of sustenance, and to Joan Trudeau, Carmel Horan et al in the "maintenance" department.

Elizabeth Jane Fraser, CND

Visitation Province Gathering Holy Redeemer Convent November 20, 2016

The Sisters of Holy Redeemer Convent welcomed fifteen associates and 4 sisters to their home. Sister Nina Glinski introduced the prayer, reflection and conversation regarding the 2016 General Chapter. Sister Colleen O'Leary guided us through a preparation process for the July 2017 Visitation Province Chapter. The afternoon was filled with joy and hope. The Associates openly and enthusiastically participated in the small and large group discussions. The sisters and associates are open to the new challenges presented by CND Orientation 2016-2021. Before the afternoon session closed, we gathered around the table to enjoy a delicious lunch prepared by Colleen, the cook at Holy Redeemer Convent. A further meeting is expected to be held in the new year to continue the preparation process for the July 2017 Chapter.

Dianne MacAskill, CND Associate


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