By Sister Alice Ann O’Neill, Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati
The Grassroots retreat at the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati motherhouse in October 2017 was a joyous gathering of 52 sisters and associates from the communities of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth, Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth, Sisters of Charity – Halifax, Sisters of Charity of Seton Hill, Sisters of Charity of the Immaculate Conception, Sisters of St Martha, and my own congregation.
We were enriched by daily reflections offered by Sister Judy Metz about Saint Vincent, Saint Louise, and Saint Elizabeth and our virtues – Humility, Simplicity, Charity, and also Charity Friendship. The contemplative conversations provided opportunities to get to know one another and connect. These interactions were very enjoyable.
We learned about ourselves and how to trust each other in a small amount of time. It was remarkable how quickly you can connect. I felt closer to these sisters that I had shared a contemplative conversation with than some sisters I have lived with over the years in my own community. The highlight of the retreat for me was meeting for prayer and faith sharing in the evenings – good stories and many laughs were shared by all.
Another opportunity to experience this retreat will be offered in April 8-13 at Maris Stella Retreat Center in Harvey Cedars, New Jersey. The deadline has been extended to March 14 for Charity Friendship: Deepening Our Relationships through Contemplative Conversations. I’d like to invite other Sisters to participate in this contemplative retreat for themselves. Learn more here.