Day 5

The morning awoke to silence,
Silent was the sky
So was the whole of creation outside
And thus felt the spirit within each.

At the Eucharist this silence enabled us to resonate with the psalmist’s ‘yearning and thirsting for God, the living God’. 
The melodious chanting of Psalm 42 by Sr. Lois Greene enhanced the sacred all around us. The Gospel opened for us the image of Jesus as the gate of the sheepfold, the one who knows every single sheep by name. Fr. Jose Kaleekel spoke of Nano and the gate of her Ballygriffin homestead where all the poor had access to the hidden but open table of the Eucharist, and also of those who later had access to education during the penal days. And now it is our turn. Each one of us is the gate for the poor and the vulnerable of our times. Food for our contemplation!

After breakfast, as some of us walked to Nano Nagle Place and the others walked the short distance to the bus, we were blessed by the gentle quiet rain drops.
Our working day began in Nano Nagle Place with food for contemplative dialogue in four different places, namely the archives, the heritage, the garden/grave (tomb of Venerable Nano), and a prayer place where each group experienced the inner stirring of the Divine.

The highlight of the day was the presence of Sr. Lucy Troy, Sr. Elizabeth Starken, Sr. Wiona Engel and Sr. Teresita Abraham, the former Congregational Leaders of the Union, to the delight of every heart!

Mr. Fergal Keane was unable to address the Congregational Gathering due to ill health. However, the facilitators soon turned this disappointment into an opportunity by calling on some of the sisters to share the global reality from their perspective. This tapped into the resourcefulness within the Gathering, and also brought in the wealth of experience among us. The documentary film of the planet Earth seen from the space and the focus questions enabled the group to reflect on our place in this reality and our own responsibility for it as Presentations.

The afternoon led us to our inner spaces by inviting our inner child to play freely with clay, with paints, movement and creative writing. This personal experience was shared in the small group, and in the process created a group consciousness and belonging.

All the processes today, i.e. Contemplative Dialogue through creative spaces, inputs and audio visuals, as well as table conversations, created a deep awareness of our movement from ‘I’ to ‘we’, of our interconnectedness and of our seamless oneness as a Congregation.

At the end of the day we gathered in the Goldie Chapel to bring together the day’s experiences, inspiration and insights through dance, creative art, and music. Sr. Miriam Martin captured the mood and energy of the group, and as we joined in the singing a beautiful synergy was born as the Love of God gathered us together.

Submitted by India North Unit