For the past few weeks here at the Novitiate House, we've been having a Monday night class on the Vatican documents related to Religious Life. In our last class yesterday, I was particularly struck by the conclusion of "Fraternal Life in Community" by the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life. (I only wish that they'd come up with a better term than "fraternity" in describing a way of life that for the most part is lived by women religious ...)

A religious community, as an expression of the Church, is a fruit of the Spirit and a participation in the Trinitarian communion. For this reason, each and every religious is committed to feel co-responsible for fraternal life in common, so that it will manifest clearly their belonging to Christ, who chooses and calls brothers and sisters to live together in His name. ...

For some consecrated persons and for some communities, the task of beginning again to rebuild fraternal life in common may appear daunting, even utopian. In the face of certain past wounds and of difficulties in the present, the task may appear beyond feeble human capacities.

It is a question of taking up in faith a reflection on the theological sense of fraternal life in common, of being convinced that through it the witness of consecration flows.

Good words to reflect upon as I begin living with my new local community tomorrow!


Anonymous said...

Fraternity does not just relate to men. I actually belonged to a sorority, but we were actually founded as a fraternity for women.

Lisa said...

Great meditation material for the next phase of your journey!

Blessings on your journeying to and around Jersey City, "my [old] home sweet home..." :)

Enjoy the fullness of the experience and the rich diversity of the Sisters with whom you share CSJP living over the next months and the witness of all the people with whom you will come into contact.

Peace and blessings!

Anonymous said...

Very appropriate words to reflect on - not just as you begin a new phase of your journey - but even as you look back over all that has been. It's funny how so any things have timeless messages!