We also just had an initial formation weekend which was very nice. Everyone in initial formation, including our temporary professed Sisters all came together for it. It was good to see Sr. Elena again, because she is missioned in Arizona. Unfortunately, it was very cold this weekend, even for Wisconsin, but she didn't seem to mind too much.
Coming together and unity seem to be a theme right now....we are in the middle of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. It is a week that our community participates in through prayer and discussion, since prayer leads to discussion. I think it is more than a coincidence that it falls around the same time as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday. He is one of my heroes, and I try to model my life after his example. One thing that he really advocated for was unity among everyone. In honor of him and of Christian Unity, I am including a couple excerpts from his famous "I Have a Dream" speech:
"With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.
"And this will be the day -- this will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with new meaning:
"My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing.
"Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim's pride,
"From every mountainside, let freedom ring!
"And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true.
"... And when this happens, when we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:
"Free at last! Free at last!
"Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!"
I would also like to recommend that you read the blog entry that one of our Sisters, Sr. Kathleen, wrote for Franciscanized World. It is an excellent entry called "Are You Aware of a Catholic Pastoral Letter on Racism." You can read it by clicking here:
The crucial beginning steps toward eradicating racism are: first, to realize our own racial prejudices, and second, to challenge them.