Dear sisters and brothers,
2024 is already a few weeks old, but not yet old enough to stop wishing you a happy new year. And so I would like to wish you a blessed year with a nice balance between work and relaxation, seriousness and humor, exercise and rest.
We get an extra day at the end of February this year. What will you do with those 24 more hours than in ‘normal’ years? Do what you always do? Will it be a day – therefore not necessarily on the 29th – like any other? Or do you make something special out of it, something that you would otherwise never or not enough get to do? Some extra time for a good book, a nice piece of music, a satisfying movie, quiet time, … In short, time to catch your breath, to not ‘have to’ do anything for a while, to let go of everything and just enjoy.
A day to practice this…
“Don’t always raise the bar, just sit on it” is a nice invitation for each of us. Beautiful but not obvious. And that is why it is all the more important to be able to maintain what is expected of us.
But at the beginning of February we also receive an invitation to take a break. To reflect on the core of our lives, on the yes we gave so many years ago. The day of consecrated life came about, among other things, out of gratitude for all who have dedicated themselves to God in one form or another. For each of us it is also a day on which we can realize again, perhaps more than usual, that God is ‘the Love of our lives’ and that we want to show Him – in the footsteps of His Son – that love is mutual. .
We can continue to give shape to the yes we said on a daily basis, in a global connection.
Because it is good that we share what we have with each other, we would like to provide you with a text that can inspire you for a prayer service on Candlemas of Our Lady. Candles and pancakes are not included in this letter, but are an equally essential part of that day (or almost).
As a sister or brother of many, I would like to wish you that things will go really well for you, that you may find joy in the ordinary days and companions and allies when life is sometimes difficult. And know that God says to each of us “Walk, I will carry you” (Augustine). We are never alone…
With kind regards, also on behalf of my colleagues from the Governing Body,
Sr. Mieke Kerckhof, chairman of URV