Soeurs de Saint-Joseph de Cluny
http://sj-cluny.org/The-journey-of-a-thousand-miles-begins-with-one-step?lang=fr
      “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”

We, the fourteen sisters from the six Provinces of India began with taking one step toward a journey of a thousand miles as we came together at Yercaud, Cluny Novitiate on 23rd March 2019, for a two month preparation for our Perpetual Vows.


Introduction

We inaugurated our intensive preparation for the final commitment through the prayer service led by Sister Reena Mecherry and community. The theme was “Called to be faithful forever.” They led us into a prayerful mood through creative enacting which once again reminded us of our call to religious life. Sister Norah ALUNKAL, the provincial of South Central India, gave the inaugural message. She insisted on the importance of these two months and called us to an intimate relationship with Christ and a radical following of Him.

We are grateful to God for blessing us with such an inspiring, loving, joyful and simple person of Sister Luciana D’Rozario, our General Councilor who organized this intense preparation and who accompanied us in our spiritual journey.

Gospel sharing:
Sister began each day with a Gospel sharing for half-an-hour. We shared our inspiration in the group. We had sessions on various topics.

Orientation: On the first day we had the orientation session which began by differentiating marriage and religious vows. Sister shared a brief explanation of the three vows and our call to religious life.

Search Within:
The session on ‘Search Within’ helped us to live out of a greater sense of depth, to know ourselves better and to see how God acted in our life.

Religious Consecration: Consecrated life is a gift of God to the church through the Spirit. Through consecration we freely offer our whole selves to a life belonging to God and do His Will every moment.

Religious Identity: Vows are not only for our sanctification but for the sanctification of the world. We are called to be different like Anne Marie Javouhey. We are free from all the bonds of the world, in order to reach out any where there is good to be done.

Spirituality and Charism of the Congregation: Spirituality and Charism cannot be separated. Religious life is a call to live the life of the Spirit that Blessed Anne Marie lived. Charism is made up of the invisible elements, the gifts of grace that the Spirit breathes in us and through us.
Mission of the Congregation: Our mission is to “Liberate to Empower”. We should be creative in our mission and balance our lives between contemplation and action. Our mission is to always be reaching out to others and to make Christ known.

Constitutions (Authority and co-responsibility):
“The rule comes from God and leads to God.” It helps us to live our life to the full and to serve God.

Vows - Obedience: The vow of obedience bears much fruit in our spiritual life. Above all our religious vow of obedience demands each religious to walk humbly.

Chastity: Through the vow of chastity, we, as religious, radiate the joy of Christ in our lives in all our relationships and especially among the religious in the community.

Poverty: The vow of poverty does not make us poor, it makes us exceptionally secure. Blessed Anne Marie says, “There is no religious without the love of poverty. True poverty leads us to heaven and helps us to act justly.”

Community life: Community is a place of learning and living in fraternity. Self-sacrifice, commitment and a feeling of belonging are necessary for community life. We need to make our community another Nazareth, where there is charity and happiness.

Prayer life: Sister Mary Thomas from Trichy province, vibrantly and enthusiastically started her session on prayer life. She said, let us give first place to God and the rest to others. The life of St. Augustine illustrates to us an intimate relationship with God.

Conclusion: In conclusion, Sister Luciana shared that we are created to become like Christ so let us transform the depths of our character and not just our personality. After filling out our evaluations, Sister Luciana led us to the Chapel. She prayed for us and gave each of us a candle of our Blessed Anne Marie Javouhey saying ...

“Be the Light of Christ.”

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