Our Arizona Associates celebrated their Commitment Ceremony on Saturday, May 20th, as did other Ohio Associates at Mount Notre Dame Chapel in Cincinnati, Ohio. In addition to those gatherings, fifty-two Associates live-streamed the Mass and Commitment Ceremony that was held at MND.
During the Mass at MND, Lisa Brackmann opened her reflection with the question: "What can we say about the effects and outcome of prayer that would entice more people to pray?" and continued with: "It seems that Jesus' statement of 'Whatever you ask of God, if you ask it in my name, God will give it to you," should have every person want to pray." The world "whatever" in the Scripture quote is the stumbling block -- Jesus' version of "whatever" and our version seemingly seldom match.
In our morning session of retreat, after Mass, Sister Carol DeFiore spoke from the heart about discernment - that journey of prayerful listening to the joys, difficulties, self (body), family, God - that is life-long, that fosters step-by-step growth in our relationship with God and others.
The afternoon session was spent with Sister Kim Dalgarn, SNDdeN, our Archivst, who challenged us with a Scavenger Hunt in the Museum.
Sister Kim taxed our memories by having us fill in a timeline of Julie's life. She concluded our session with a reminder that Julie spent 52 years as a committed laywoman and 12 years in mission as a sister. Those words were a joy to hear as an Associate of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur!
May 20th was a life-giving day that will continue to be the impetus of Lisa's plea: "Ley us rediscover the charism that Saint Julie understood to be the uniting force of a community and the energy of ministries to "give the people what they need."
Written by Barbara Markus, first published in the U.S. E-Newsletter, June 2023, Vol 14 No.5