I'm sure many of you are checking the congregational website for updates, but I thought that when time allowed, I'd add a few things of my own as the week progresses rather than leaving it all to be explained at the end. So, here goes...
We began our time together formally with a beautiful prayer service and introduction to our theme "Called to Mystery" around the center of the Coer de Catherine, where our meetings are being held. I wasn't around for the last chapter, but I am aware of the significance of the spiral in preceeding chapters, which, as you can see, was captured again in the opening ritual. It was awesome to look up and see and hear the echoes of so many sisters from so many places all connected as one.
We are obviously also having a bit of fun with the meetings as you can tell by the next pictures. Sr. Sandra and St. Joseph meet again.
Last night St. Paul welcomed us with a social after dinner. Garrison Keillor was unable to be with us, so he sent another entertainer as "Minnesota's Cultural Embassador." What a riot! You'll have to ask one of the sisters to explain in person.
One of the things I have absolutely loved is the way that the provinces and vice-provinces are presenting their accountability "stories" (rather than reports). Each vice/province has creatively presented how their sisters and associates have lived the acts of chapter from 2001. From beautiful powerpoints, to renditions of "Stone Soup," to Sr. Donna Gunn's presentation from the view point of Countess Felicite de Rochejaquelein (the woman who funded the sisters initially to come to the U.S. in 1836), the stories have connected the personal touches unique to each vice/province with the underlying story and mission that is the same for all.
I would say that there is an energy and zeal present just in being together, but an energy and zeal that is magnified with the unknowns of what will come out of the next two weeks. We are living into the days, working to move from a group to a congregation--women (and men) on a shared and sacred mission, not afraid to ask the difficult or maybe impossible questions, welcoming the unexpected, and expecting to be changed.
It's only Friday, so a few more days yet to come. I'm late for dinner and hungry, so that's it for tonight. Know that the prayers and support of all of you at home are felt in a very real way. We are all one!