It was World Day of Prayer for Vocations which Annella utilized as her theme for the prayer part of this April meeting. We began and ended with the hymn The Summons then proceeded to the common room for the evening. The following items were discussed:
- Saturday, May 26 will be our summer bbq at five o’clock
- Sunday, JUNE 24, OPEN HOUSE: MARTHA ANNIVERSARY, DAY OF CELEBRATION (9 A.M.) Mass, Sisters and Associates only and one to five, OPEN HOUSE, COME AND GO TEA. (Kathy Gillis will be chief organizer, Caroline Martin assisting.)
- September Retreat, 28,29 and 30th…Guest speaker to be determined. Please mark these dates on your calendar.
Using the last three chapters from The Decree of Lay People, Sister Josie and your scribe posed questions and guided discussion with the group on the role of the laity in the church. “By right of our Baptism we are all strengthened by the power of the Holy Spirit and called by God to make of our apostolate, through the vigour of our Christian spirit, a leaven to the world.” For these past months it has been a somewhat nostalgic journey back in time for us all as we shared and thoughtfully made our way through those Vatican 11 documents.
And yes, as always, the discussions seem to follow us right into the lunch room!
Blessings from your Scribe Ina.
A gathering of the Sydney Mines Associates was held on Wednesday, March 7th, 2018. Julia Townsend was the guest. She delivered the Director’s presentation: Martha associates: carriers of the Charism.
A lovely meeting with discussion followed topped off by a wonderful cup of tea and coffee!
Here are a few pictures of the afternoon!
Sr. Claudette and Julia were in Calgary on Monday, Feb. 26th, 2018 to meet and visit with three of the Ladies who were active members of the Calgary Associates. Due to the challenges of an Associate group meeting together in such a large city, the Calgary group has had to disband. However, a small group of 4 Ladies remain connected to the Martha Associates. They continue to be invited to the Western Retreat weekend each year, and they still receive a visit from the Martha Associate Director which helps to keep them connected! It was a lovely visit with these wonderful Ladies!!
Our December meeting took place at the home of David and Paula Nearing in Reserve Mines. We were treated to a presentation from the Glace Bay Food Bank. Executive Director Sandra MacPherson, and Board Member Dave MacKeigan gave an informal talk about the history of the organization and how it has grown.
Born from a town that has been plagued with employment challenges from the closure of the coal mines and a reduction in the fishery, this group has been helping the people of Glace Bay and surrounding area for 30 years. Their demand has also increased and they are serving more and more people. Both Sandra and Dave had stressed that they do not do this alone as they rely heavily on donations and volunteers to make this happen. Continue reading
Nov. 3-5, 2017
Canadian Catholic Student Association Conference
Cape Breton University Chaplaincy Office hosted this wonderful Conference from Nov. 3-5, 2017 at the Gaelic College in Cape Breton. Sr. Catherine MacFarlane CSM, is a member of the Chaplaincy Office and was involved with the planning and organization of the Conference. There were 28 students and Chaplains in attendance from several Atlantic Universities. It was a blessing indeed to see young people interested in their Catholic Faith!!
Tuesday evening, October 17 a grass fire started on the coulees in Lethbridge. The winds were 130 kilometers an hour and the fire moved quickly. It came very close to Martha Retreat Centre, even burning part of the lawn. The sisters evacuated and spent the night with friends. The firefighters got the fire out in time. Many people were praying for the Sisters and the Centre.
Fifteen of us attended the meeting Sunday, Oct. 22 which began with Caroline leading a beautiful PRAYER OF ACCEPTANCE and closed singing the hymn Immaculate Mary in gratitude for keeping our three Sisters and their home safe. Tuesday evening, hurricane force winds had fed a rapidly moving grass fire in the coulees right behind the Retreat Center. Too close for comfort, the flames leapt hungrily right up to the grass on their property, licking at its edges! Sisters Theresa, Josephine and Josie each told their own emotionally charged stories of how they fled their home in a matter of minutes. It was a night to praise God for His mercy and His saving power! Continue reading
Martha Associate Day
September 16, 2017
The Eastern Associates held their annual gathering on Saturday, September 16, 2017 at Bethany. It marked the last time that the Eastern Group would meet at Bethany. As well, it marked a new beginning to the face of the annual gathering: a day as opposed to a full weekend retreat. The topic of the day was; therefore, very appropriate, “The Art Of Grieving”.
Sr. Franklyn Ferguson, CSM, lead us through a beautiful presentation, reflecting on a more complete understanding of what it means to grieve. Sr. Franklyn opened her presentation with a lovely song: “There is a Season”, reminding us that there is a time for every purpose under Heaven!
Sr. Franklyn explained that grieving is a process of how we perceive loss: psychologically, socially, behaviorally, physically and spiritually. Naming our loss and our feelings helps us to bring an understanding to it, and allows us to move forward and to do something about it. When we do not allow ourselves to deal with our grief, it can become a pathology and makes us sick!
It is important to remember that we all grieve in different ways and in different periods of time. It is also noteworthy that grief does not only occur with death, but with the loss of many things ie: Hearing, eyesight, mobility, etc. Any change can constitute loss. Awareness of these changes, and naming them allows us to move forward.
Mourning is a part of grieving and it is something we must do. It too is a process and must be done in each person’s time.
Sr. Franklyn described grieving in this way: Grief is like a cut, acute and numb, followed by bleeding, eventual healing and finally a scar. The scar may shrink, but it is always there. But the cut has travelled through a process of change and has been transformed, and the healing allows us to continue forward as all life must.
Our day ended with a prayer and song of Thanksgiving to God.