May, the month of Mary!
The month of May seemed to disappear very quickly from my (Sr. Juliana’s) calender and I wondered how it was for the novices in their assigned Apostolic Experiences.
After our celebration of Easter, we organized ourselves for our next commitments. Alejandra began her Apostolic Experience in Egypt. Clara and Rozeni traveled via Egypt to Tunis and began their apostolic service in working with the little babies at “La Voix de L’Enfant” (“The Voice of the Child”) in Nabeul, near Tunis. For all of the novices, living in a Muslim country is an important part of their Apostolic Experience, as an opportunity to know, to value, and to respond to the challenge of living in environments where Christians are a minority.
Joey is in Ecce Homo experiencing what it means to run a guesthouse, and going twice a week to the L’Arche community in Bethlehem to help the handicapped in their workshop. Victoria and Arlyne are living in the Novitiate Community working full time, Arlyne in the Kehila and Victoria in a bilingual school called “Hand in Hand”, and keeping the Novitiate house full of life.
The novices’ first Apostolic Experience was also the time that we had planned for me to go to visit my family, all of whom are living in different parts of Austria. I met some new family members, I learned that a wedding is being planned, and I made the acquaintance of Maximilian Moses who was borne since my last visit. I submitted all the papers required for my pension arrangements, and finally made adjustments to our Novitiate website, which was my last task before boarding the plane to return to my ministry in Jerusalem. So now, with renewed strength and joy, I have returned to Jerusalem and to my mission of accompanying the Novices in the last part of their journey towards the celebration of their First Vows in Sion.
Having mentioned our website, I want to encourage you to continue to use it (www.nds-novitiate.org) to find out what is happening to us in Ein Karem, in the Congregational Novitiate. On the website you will now find postings of the novices’ Apostolic Experiences, to bring you up to date. To get the older postings, just click in “blog” in the menu and you get to the postings archive.
By the 28th of May, the novices too will begin to return to the Novitiate in Ein Karem and we all will share our experiences of the time that we have been away. Sr. Patricia Watson from Australia will begin her session on Alphonse Ratisbonne and Louise Humann, by the second of June. Then, I hope we will be able to have a few days of holiday together as a community, after the session with Sr. Patricia and before all the novices leave again for their long term Apostolic Experiences in different communities in Israel and Krakow.
Sr. Ivone is now on her home visit in Brazil where she is able to share her life in Jerusalem with family, friends and the sisters and brothers of Sion. We wish her well and lots of joy during the remaining weeks that she will have there.
Greetings and Blessings
Community “St. John in Montana”