12 May 2023
“Evolving joyfully towards the Fullness of Consecrated Life” was the theme for the 37 th Common Juniorate Programme held at Common House of Formation (CHF), Nagercoil, Tamilnadu, India from 14th March 2023 to 30th April 2023. The symbol chosen for the programme - ‘The Life Cycle Of A Butterfly’, invited the participants to open their hearts and minds towards transformation, so as to evolve joyfully towards the fullness of consecrated life. The inaugural day, 16th March was a very remarkable and auspicious day in the lives of 25 junior sisters, hailing from 8 provinces including East Africa.
The inaugural Eucharistic celebration by Vicar General Rev. Fr. Hilarius enlightened and inspired the junior sisters solemnly, how to be a joyful witness of Christ in their Mission. The inaugural prayer by Sr. Zeena, the coordinator and the sisters of the province of Pune led them to have a desire to embrace the change. The enactment of the story of the butterfly and the cocoon brought life’s lessons to face challenges and struggles in their lives. As Robert Tew, once wrote “The struggle you’re in today is developing the strength you need for tomorrow. Don’t give up”.
In order to respond adequately to the challenges of the 21st century and make our lives and works relevant to the present world, we have to consciously evolve to be an authentic follower of Jesus through a radical shift in our life and by being on fire with the passion and compassion of Jesus.
As we journey along the path of our Mother Foundress and discover her dreams for our world of today, we may falter and fall but ….”It is not until you fall that you fly…” and “Dream it possible” We need the courage and faith of the first disciples and our founders, in letting God lead us into unknown paths, and unfamiliar terrains.
The following topics –“Cosmos today and our response”, “Spirituality of the History of our Congregation”, “Spirituality of the Sisters of the Cross and Charism in view of the kingdom Mission”, “Rooted and grounded in Christ”, “Mission Consciousness to be Joyful Witnesses”, “Consecrated life and Obedience, Poverty and Chastity in view of the Kingdom”,” Community Life” and “Leadership”, were dealt effectively by the experts of the Congregational documents, church scholars and a Socialist. All these have made a great impact on the perception of the participants. The Sharing of the Paschal experience enriched and strengthened their faith and helped them to trust God and have deep love for Christ.
Sharing of their experiences and reflections held among them are of fruit gathering, inspired, encouraged, energized, empowered and challenged each other to see God at work in their life circumstances. Each one’s sharing was unique and awakened their hearts and minds. It helped them to look into their lives, commitment, and mission, integrating them to be better human persons. They realized that the spirit of our Mother Claudine and our early sisters enkindled in them the fire of love. Life experiences of one another inspired them to have a God experience and meet Christ in different situations and keep their focus on Christ alone.
Sr. Zeena conducted a special Concluding Prayer and wished them to have new life ahead. She thanked each and every person for the success of the CJP through their services. The programme came to an end, bringing God’s abundant blessings on all who worked behind the scenes, to make the programme fruitful. We are grateful to the General Team and the Formators for their strenuous efforts towards the success of 37th Common Juniorate Programme.
Sr. Zeena D’Souza,
Province of Pune