Today was our last day at our Intercommunity Novitiate Program for this Semester. We return in five weeks after our Christmas Break.

I can't say enough about this program, especially our group of novices and novice directors. We definitely bonded. At lunch today, someone commented that you could sit next to anyone in the group at the table and instantly fall into a comfortable conversation.

Almost every Tuesday and Wednesday since Septemeber, we have shared classes, meals, liturgy, prayer, and conversation with this group. It has been such a pleasure to get to know them. The Novices are a diverse group, from early 20's to early 50's, 8 countries of origin and 8 religious congregations. But we are all answering God's call. We're all going through the liminal experience of Novitiate. So when you share an experience you went through that someone else would think was crazy, your intercommunity novitiate friends nod their heads and tell you about a similar experience they went through the week before.

The topics and content of our presentations have also been extremely valuable. The presenters were good ... some were great. This Semester we delved into the History of Religious Life, Liturgical Planning, Theology of Prayer, Mindfulness Meditation, the Vows, and Personal Integration & the Spiritual Life. We only scratched the surface on most of it, but it was all helpful.

The sad thing is that when we head back at the end of January, 4 Novices and 2 Novice Directors will no longer be with us. They will be continuing on to the next stages of their Novitiate journeys. We will miss them. Goodbyes are never easy, but I have a feeling we will stay in touch.


Lisa said...

What a beautiful group, including some very familiar faces!

Susan Rose Francois, CSJP said...

Lisa, I told those familiar faces that I "knew" you at lunch the other day.

Lisa said...

:) That was nice of you! Thank you.