Nano Nagle carried the light of her lantern, and the light of the Gospel into the darkness, desolation and discrimination endured by the people of God in Ireland under the Penal Laws.
‘Because the world still needs the Gospel and Nano’s lantern light, it is timely to remember Pope Francis’ challenge to go beyond the comfortable spaces, places and territories … towards new socio-cultural settings .. wherever the need for the light and the Risen Christ is greatest. Nano’s charism gives light to the journey towards an evangelisation that includes prophetic intercultural dialogue’.
(Extract from ‘Nano Nagle and An Evolving Charism’ – edited by Bernadette Flanagan, Mary T. O’Brien and Anne O’Leary. (page 178, ‘Presentation Charism in a Latino Context’, Gloria Inés Loya, pbvm).
Darkness to light
The backdrop to the Presentation Sisters’ stand area at the recent WMOF Pastoral Congress (22nd – 25th August) shared the very real and powerful experience of the ‘journey from darkness into light’ of some participants from the Lantern Project (Cork City). They created this image from their shared experience. See more information HERE.
The powerful detail in this image provided the precursor for a great many introductions and conversations during the four days of our welcoming presence there.
Christianity in the desert
In this morning’s daily mediation piece by Fr. Richard Rohr, ofm, he wrote:
“Today’s wilderness can be found in bustling suburban and urban centres, on death row, in homeless shelters in the middle of the night, in the eyes of a hospice patient, and in the desperation of AIDS orphans in Africa and around the world. Perhaps these are the postmodern desert mothers and fathers. Perhaps contemplative spaces can be found wherever people skirt the margins of inclusion. Perhaps those whom we value least have the most to teach.
We are in need of those values central to African monasticism and early Christian hospitality; they include communal relationships, humility, and compassion. Laura Swan sums up these virtues in the word apatheia, defined as “a mature mindfulness, a grounded sensitivity, and a keen attention to one’s inner world as well as to the world in which one has journeyed.” Inevitably, the journey takes each of us in different directions; however, by virtue of circumstances or choice, each of us will at some point in our lives find ourselves on the outskirts of society listening to the silence coming from within. During these times, we realize that contemplation is a destination as well as a practice”. For the full text see: https://cac.org/christianity-in-the-desert-2018-09-05/
Today, more than ever, that beam of light from Nano’s lantern continues to light the footsteps of those on that journey from darkness to light.