Editorial: Holy Names Sisters celebrate their 175 years of working for justice
"I am convinced that gospel courage, Christian daring and the political will to change the unjust structures of society are growing. I am convinced that justice is increasing."
Liliane Bourdeau (SM) #SNJM-175thAnniversaryYear
Blessed Marie Rose Durocher, foundress of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, saw a need to provide educational opportunities for children whose needs for schooling were not being met. So she gathered a few friends and started a school. She also started a religious congregation dedicated to educating the people of God, especially girls. This happened in Longueil, Quebec, 175 years ago.
This year we celebrate the hundreds of Sister-teachers and thousands of children on every continent who have been part of our journey and let us be part of theirs.
On our special feast days, we invite all who wish to join our entire congregation in some service or justice action.
Blessed Marie Rose's feast day is Oct. 6. On or near that day, hundreds of Sisters, our Associates and friends will be offering some type of service.
Our congregational foci are trafficking in women and children, water, immigrants and refugees. So anything in those areas would align with our corporate stands.
Some might write a letter to advocate for justice, or a note to someone just to honor a connection.
One group of Sisters is gathering to cut out fabric for a woman who sews baby clothes for a women's and children's shelter. SNJMs co-sponsored the Compassion Games covered in the last issue.
SNJMs have attended city council meetings to advocate toward making Spokane a nuclear weapons free city and to replace fossil fuels by renewables by 2030.
One will be a presenter at a retreat for people seeking to deepen their spirituality.
See! The spectrum is broad!
When we act together with love and compassion toward justice in our world, it happens! Not all at once, but over time, the level of justice rises, becomes contagious, gathers others.
The Fig Tree is full of such stories! That is why we read it. We want to be part of creating the greater good.
So, as you live your story, I invite you to be a part of our story on or near Oct. 6 by choosing a service project.
The opening quote suggests that justice is increasing. These days, I find the following quote from British statesman John Lubbock inspirational: "What we see depends mainly on what we look for."
Mary Ann Farley, SNJM – Fig Tree Editorial Team
Copyright@ The Fig Tree, October, 2018