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November Article for The RI Catholic

This article was forst published in the Rhode Island Catholic

Light and darkness are elusive in early November. It’s not that far from those long summer days when an extravagant sun covered most of our waking hours. Light was everywhere. Our bodies and spirits resist having to adjust to the ever-shortening days leading us to the winter solstice. Although the temperature is often mild at this time of year, we find ourselves going to work in just breaking light and returning in dusk.

A brilliant sun can glitter off the golden and red trees as beautifully as it did off the crashing waves during beach days in August. A tree can look dark and dull until the light hits and then it becomes a mirror of spun gold. With a cloud or a shadow, the colors disappear into dark dead leaves ready to be blown off by the next wind. November teases us with light.

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JPIC core committee meeting - October 23-25

The JPIC core committee met at the Motherhouse October 23-25. Monica Lambton, Coordinator, was joined by Sisters Mary Corbett, Anne Gillis, Eleanor McCloskey, Eileen Roach and Catherine Walker, with Congregation of Notre Dame associates Dorena Hall and Teresa McKerral.

We began Thursday evening with a viewing of the video Do the Math (http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/do-the-math/) This powerful film on the topic of climate change led us to serious considerations in choosing a focus for our Action Plan in the coming months.

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Marguerite Bourgeoys: A Builder?

Marguerite Bourgeoys – To Love is to Serve

In 1652, Paul de Chomedey de Maisonneuve (native of Neuville-sur-Vanne), founder and governor of Ville-Marie (Montreal), was passing through Troyes in search of a teacher. For Marguerite, it is a call: “I offered to go and he accepted me.”

“About fifteen days after the Feast of All Saints,” following her long journey (two long months at sea) from Troyes to New France and her stay in Québec to care for the convalescing recruits, Marguerite finally arrived in Ville-Marie. She had at last reached the place where she would fulfill her mission, the place for which she had left her family and her native France.

However, in this December 1653, there were no opportunities for her to teach. This was because there were no school age children. What ways did she find to integrate herself into the life of the colony? How did she demonstrate her devotion?

Marguerite’s zeal quickly found means of expression. She responded to the needs of the settlers, comforted the troubled, assisted the foundress of Hôtel-Dieu, Jeanne Mance (also from the region of Champagne, the town of Langres), spread the Good News with humble everyday actions, and counseled all those who sought her advice. Clearly, she was in no way withdrawn or selfish.

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