Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Story of Life

These past four days have been days of great joy --filled with the Holy Spirit, they have enlivened my soul, rejuvenated my own spirit, and have propelled me into the future. Being in a room of 400 religious sisters--my sisters--does something deeply profound to the soul.

The Assembly is a time in which the Sisters of Saint Francis of Philadelphia gather mid-way through a leadership team's term. There were so many opportunities for me to meet sisters from all over, to hear their stories, share in laughter and tears, to grow deeper in relationship with the women who are becoming my family.

One sister in particular that I had the opportunity to visit with has spoken so deeply to my heart. Her life speaks of struggle yet her handheld computer that vocalizes the words that ALS has stripped her of the ability of doing for herself, speaks of joy, deep abiding joy! My conversation with Anna May was only over the course of our lunch break, but as we sat talking I saw the most beautiful woman in the world before me! She laughed as she typed to me the irony of her inability to speak, as she shared how "chatty" a person she was. I wish I could have heard her voice. I bet you it was beautiful too!

Sitting before me was the answer to many of my most recent prayers and reflections concerning this next step. I have no clue where it is going to lead me, in some ways I walk confidently while in others I stumble and wonder . . . but here she sat, laughing, joy-filled, supportive, and loving. She has every reason in the world to be mad at what life has dealt her, but instead of throwing in the towel she has chosen to adapt, to grow, and to become closer to the woman that she was created to be. The Holy Spirit shines forth from her eyes telling a story of life.

I sit in the quiet of my room praising God for the gift she has become in my life. Her promised prayers fill me with complete faith that "all shall be well." Thank you Anna May!

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