10 July 2008

A Helping Hand

On Tuesday morning, Father Valentin Viguera, SDB, our religious assistant to the Vatican arrived for his official visit. Tuesday evening he shared with us photos of different Visitation monasteries he has visited in Africa, Spain and Central and South America. On Wednesday, Father gave us two conferences; perhaps the highlight was his discussion of the spiritual virtues which are most important to our life as Visitandines. During his conference he used his hand as a tool for us to remember the virtues about which he spoke. The palm, he explained is essential; without the abnegation of our own will, we cannot embrace the will of God and live out the virtues which are represented by the fingers. Beginning with the pointer finger, the virtues he discussed are: accepting God's Good Pleasure in all circumstances, humility, gentleness, simplicity and joy in the common life. All were impressed with the originality and clarity of this "handy" tool which Father (through our faithful interpreter, Sister Leonie Therese) explained during his second conference. The hand -- and all its virtues -- will, no doubt, become the subject of many future discussions in community. We are grateful to Father Viguera for his time spent with us and his interest in the Visitation.

"The spirit of this little congregation is one of gentleness, littleness, simplicity and poverty; we should not depart from this, but so completely subject our inclinations to its spirit . . . always allowing gentleness and humility to prevail in what we say or do."
St. Francis de Sales

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