Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity Community Director Sister Natalie Binversie summarizes the recent CMSWR National Assembly.
“Celebrating the Year of Consecrated Life: Religious Life as Prophetic Witness” was the theme of the Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious (CMSWR) National Assembly in St. Louis November 12-13, 2015. The Assembly opened with a Mass celebrated at the Old Cathedral located by the Arch. The main celebrant and homilist was His Eminence Most Reverend Justin Cardinal Rigali.
The evening session consisted of a slideshow presenting the Year of Consecrated Life in Review. The Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity were well represented in the activities throughout the year. This meeting was followed up November 13-14 with the Symposium on Religious Life, “To Wake Up the World,” which was open to all religious, clergy and laity.
The presenters focused on theological perspectives, structures of religious life, and teachings of the Popes on religious life. The Symposium began with a keynote address entitled, “Religious Life and Ecclesial Communion,” by Archbishop Augustine DiNoia, OP. Both of these days provided opportunity to meet and share with other Women Religious. It was a time to thank God for the call received to follow Him as a Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity.
These words of Pope Francis were highlighted on the program:
“In a special way I would like to express my esteem and gratitude… to the religious women of the United States. What would the Church be without you? Women of strength, fighters, with that spirit of courage which puts you at the front lines in the proclamation of the Gospel. To, religious women, sisters and mothers of this people, I wish to say ‘thank you’, a big thank you…and to tell you that I love you very much.”
-Pope Francis (Homily during Vespers with Clergy, Men and Women Religious, St. Patrick Cathedral, September 24, 2015)