Earlier this month, I was invited to give a presentation on human trafficking to the 8th grade class at a local Catholic girls school here in the Seattle Area. As I pulled into the parking lot, I noticed this slogan painted on the side of the school's vans: "Giving Girls Their Voice." What a wonderful way of framing the ministry of education--helping young women to find their voice, so that they can in turn be voices for justice and positive change in the world!
Of course, I was also struck by the similarity with our own name, Giving Voice. While I was not yet involved when the name was chosen for this network of younger women religious, it seems that the name itself holds a surplus of meaning. Our name gives voice to so much: hope, love, life, dreams, and a commitment to the future.
- When we come together in prayer, reflection and conversation--whether it is in person at a GV gathering or virtually on Facebook--we give voice to our experience as younger women religious.
- When we step up to the microphone at a community meeting to share our perspective as younger religious, we give voice to the reality, hopes and dreams of our generation.
- When we join in prayer for the Church and our Sisters called to leadership, we give voice to our faith and commitment to this particular way of following Jesus in and for the world.
The beauty of being involved with Giving Voice is that even though we may be part of a small age minority in our own congregations, we are also part of this wider network with connections across the miles, between charisms, and within our generation.
Because of that, when we "give voice," we do so with the prayerful presence, powerful support, and playful spirit of our peers in religious life.
Here are some ways to tap into this network of prayer, support, and play!