Celebrate, Flourish, Now

Celebrate, Flourish, Now

From June 11 to June 16, 2017, we Ursulines of Chatham, steeped in the Chapter theme, “Celebrate, Flourish, Now”, gathered at Villa Angela to reflect on our past four years and to establish our direction for the future. As the forty-four participants met daily, they were surrounded and lifted up by the prayer of the other sisters in the Community. In a time of uncertainty and vulnerability for many people and for creation itself, everyone was encouraged in the opening reflection by the words of Hopi Elders:

“The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above the water. And I say, see who is there with you and celebrate…All that we do now must done in a sacred manner and in celebration. We are the ones we have been waiting for.”

Each day was grounded in the morning’s prayerful reflection. There were opportunities for silence and for conversation in both small and large groups. Carefully considering our rich heritage and the call of the Spirit to ever deeper relationship, we arrived together at a set of values which will be our guide in the coming years:

  • Rooted in a contemplative stance, we commit ourselves to moving forward in a spirit of collaboration, flexibility and transparency.
  • We will attune ourselves to the movement of the Holy Spirit at all times and in all ways.
  • We will be open and responsive to the needs and realities of changing times.
  • We will transmit the Light of Christ with openness, inclusivity and clarity.

Our days together ended with ritual welcoming the newly elected Leadership Circle consisting of Sister Theresa Campeau, Community Leader and Sisters Noreen Allossery-Walsh, Pauline Maheux and Sheila McKinley, members of the Leadership Circle. This event was followed by a celebratory meal which was filled with moments of thanksgiving and appreciation for our days together and for all those who helped to make the time so rich and beneficial.

"Live in harmony, united together in one heart and one will."