CG 2018 is shorthand for “Congregational Gathering 2018”. It represents a Gathering in Ireland from 19 April to 14 May 2018 of Presentation Sisters from around the globe. The event will begin in Cork City (19 – 26 April) before moving on to Dublin (29 April – 14 May).
Religious congregations, like many other organisations, meet regularly to review their mission and activities. In the case of religious congregations there is, in addition, the specifics and fundamental dimension of reflecting together on how the Congregation is responding to the Gospel. This is done in light of fidelity to the original call of the Sisters’ Founder, Venerable Nano Nagle and an awareness of the contemporary challenges religious confront in today’s society.
In their deliberations and reflections the delegates to the 2018 Congregational Gathering will be guided by the theme of the Gathering: Nano Aflame! Stoking our Passion … Becoming Fire … Radiating Love!
This theme is nurtured and deepened by metaphors and symbols drawn from the life of Venerable Nano herself. Nano was the daughter of a well-off 18th Century farming family, the Nagles, and a contemporary of Edmund Burke. She abandoned a life of rural ease to minister to the poor of Cork city.
Answering a deep call within her heart, she devoted herself to the poor of the city. Cork was then a city of merchants but also, in the back lanes, a city of the poor. She often walked these city lanes carrying a lantern. This lantern, itself a practical requirement of the times, suggests a woman prepared to walk with courage and compassion in the gloom of the back lanes of 18th century Cork, home to the poor who lived in hovels, deprived of the necessities of life. Nano’s lantern shed the light of love and compassion. She also offered a light to the mind through the provision of education for poor people. Over the years a rich legacy of image, story and poetry has accrued to this image of Nano holding aloft her lantern. This legacy inspires the theme of the 2018 Gathering in Cork.
As the Sisters gather they will bring with them, not only the variety and richness of their lived experience in the different places around the world where they minister, but also the outcome of prayer, reflection and sharing in a process known as Contemplative Dialogue. They will not come empty-handed. Together, in Cork and later in Dublin they will develop from a rich resource of memory, tradition and reflection, a vision for the future.
Please pray for all who gather in Ireland for the Congregational Gathering 2018 (CG2018).