CSJ Associates Renew Commitments
The sun shone brightly on the annual Associates Commitment Day on April 16, 2016. Gathered were 58 Associates renewing their promises and approximately 22 Sisters who received and supported our commitments for the following year.
The CSJ Associates live their faith by embracing the charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto to reach out in love to the dear neighbour. Several Associates have been renewing their commitments for over 25 years.
The Galilee Community organized this event. After welcoming the attendees, we said the Morning Prayer followed by an introduction of our guest speaker — Sister Nida Fe Chavez, CSJ, who presented on the theme of God’s Enduring Mercy.
Sister Nida explored Pope Francis’ theme of Mercy for this extraordinary Jubilee Year. We enjoyed the inspiring videos and beautiful songs that reflected the feeling of the wonderful mercy of God. Two well-known Scripture passages, the Woman Caught in Adultery and the Prodigal Son, were given as examples. The reflection handouts invited us to ponder on the times when we received mercy, when we gave mercy, and when we withheld mercy.
Ursula Matthews commented that "Sister Nida's presentation on living out Pope Francis' plea for mercy was thought-inspiring, especially before commitment." Some of the other comments on the day included:
- "The reflections helped me go deeper and really think about mercy, love and forgiveness."
- "Very uplifting and emotional."
- "The presentation struck a deep chord in the core of my soul... I have to begin climbing the mountain again, leaving the plateau I was becoming too comfortable with."
- "Thank you for a wonderful retreat."
At Mass, Father Conlin Mulvihill, SJ continued the theme of God’s Mercy in his homily by reflecting on showing and giving love, the consequences of withholding mercy by exacting revenge, and how that destroys our relationships with each other.
He quoted a couple of phrases. One was "judge not and you will not be judged" and the other was "the measure you give will be the measure you get back" — both as a way to look at revenge.
Personally, I am reminded of the film Pay it Forward where we are asked to pass on a kindness to others that has been shown to us.
Sister Thérèse Meunier, Congregational Leader, together with Barbara Baptista and Mary Huan, Associates Co-Directors, led the commitment ceremony during Mass. The Associates re-committed themselves to live the charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph and the Sisters, in turn, expressed their support to the Associates.
Shannon Lee Maguire thanked Sister Nida after her inspiring and reflective presentation, Father Conlin for celebrating the Eucharist, and all the Sisters for their loving support to the Associates. A reception with great fellowship and wonderful goodies followed the Mass in the Main Foyer.
By Anna Hiris