It's November--the month of giving thanks.
For me this year, giving thanks for all that God has blessed me with is extremely poignant and I am so grateful for all of God's goodness to me.
I live in Westchester County, right outside New York City which recently just experienced Hurricane Sandy during which many people's lives were lost and homes destroyed. Places that I have visited over summer vacations such as the Rockaways, Breezy Point, Long Beach and areas on the Jersey shore such as Seaside Heights have had major devastation and ruin. Many people went without power for days. Some had no power for weeks and some still have none. What a sad situation.
People I know have lost their homes but Thank God are okay. These family friends talk not just of the damage to their houses but rather the destruction to their "heart items"--photo albums from childhood, high school and college, love letters their Dad and Mom wrote to each other and grandparents' immigration papers. However, my friends say it is going to be okay because while the objects are gone; the memories are alive in their hearts and thoughts.
Hurricane Sandy brought to my attention the vulnerability of the world and its people. In our "Voices of Younger Women Religious" section of this month's e-newsletter you will find the reflections of Juliet Mousseau, RSCJ. She mentions how we in religious life are vulnerable since we have little control over what will happen and there is uncertainty about our future. This is true too for the many people affected by Hurricane Sandy and for many others in tough situations of poverty and helplessness in our world. We as women religious are not exempt from the human condition. But I believe we as women religious can turn in prayer to God, the center of our lives and invite God to be with us as we co-create a new future together. We can voice our concerns to God and then be "voice" for others too.
Giving Voice is an avenue for which I have been fortunate to have memories from conversations and times together with women religious peers at both our January 20s and 30s weekends and our National Summer Conferences. These gatherings have also strengthened my desire to be a "voice" for those who are more vulnerable than me. In this month of Thanksgiving, I say Thank you to all who have been part of my Giving Voice experience and my journey as an Ursuline sister.
Check below for details and registration information for both theJanuary 2013 Retreat for Sisters in their 20s & 30s in Arizona and our July 2013 National Gathering in California. Look into attending if you can or passing on information to a "younger" woman religious you know. The registration fee for our July 2013 Conference goes up from $375 to $400 on January 1, 2013. So send in your registrations soon!!!