November 03, 2006

A weekend with Catherine

For the seventeen Sisters from the Union, Federation, Institute and the Mercy Associates this was a weekend like no other. Why? Because we spent it in the presence of Catherine in her house – St Mary’s Convent, Handsworth.

Having been warmly welcomed by the resident team we were gently led by Anne Reid, Associate, into a deeper relationship with Catherine. We got to know the real woman. We were able to put a FACE on her and identify her and speak to her in our individual need and desire.


Anne Reid admiring a gift from the community— a framed picture of the statues of Catherine and Juliana in Handsworth.

Anne helped us to journey with Catherine through her early years and through those years of patient waiting, and longing and loving submission to God’s will for her. Many, if not all, shed a tear at the beautifully moving ritual recalling Catherine’s death.

I came away with hope renewed in my heart. A hope for our Mercy family - that we, in our time, would be true to the ideals of Catherine that the poor would be served. Those poor whom I might discover in strange places – even within myself and my own community.


The “happy” group!

When it is on offer again don’t miss it. You will come away transformed.

Gratitude was expressed to the Institute, Union and Federation for the collaborative venture involved in making St Mary’s what it is today. Catherine’s house – Our house.

Sheila Burke rsm (on behalf of the group)

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