Category Archives: Resources

  Consulted for the meaning of the word “jubilee,” the little Larousse tells us: “To express great joy”! Yes, but what joy? That of the kids playing ball in the yard? That of the girls who tell stories of their last judo lesson? or that of the lucky winner of the national lottery?… Well no, the joy we experienced in the community of Sceaux on Thursday, October 6, 2022, is on another level. That day, Sr. Agnès Nouyrigat and 4 members of her family; Sr. Rosemarie Bordes (who had already celebrated her jubilee on August 15 in the nursing home where she lives); Father Emmanuel Lengaigne (Provincial Superior of the Missionaries of Africa) and the entire community of Sceaux were gathered to celebrate the jubilee of Agnès (50 years) and Rosemarie (60 years). Quite naturally, the preparation for this great day was organized around these two themes: joy and thanksgiving.…

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Creator of All, From your communion of love your Word went forth to create a symphony of life that sings your praise.   By your Holy Wisdom you made the Earth to bring forth a diversity of creatures who praise you in their being. You called human beings to till and keep your garden. But we turn in on ourselves and away from our co-creatures.   We fail to listen to the cries of the poor and the needs of the most vulnerable. We silence the voices of those who hold the traditions that teach us to care for the Earth. We close our ears to your creative, reconciling and sustaining Word that calls to us through the Scriptures.   Creation cries out as forests crackle, and animals alike flee the fires of injustice that we have lit by our unwillingness to listen.   In this Season of Creation, we…

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Today’s feast is somehow mysterious… In the 1st reading, we are told that, risen from the dead, Jesus has been appearing to his apostles a number of times (Acts 1:1-11). A few verses later, we see him disappearing from their sight. Appearing, disappearing – these two words bring to mind the two realities of presence and absence. But, more still, they remind us of the two ways of understanding: through seeing and through perceiving. Personally, I see this feast of the Ascension as an invitation to a new way of recognizing God among us. It is no longer a presence that our eyes can see but a presence perceived by our hearts. Our ‘vision’ of God no longer depends on our eyesight but on… our faith! We no longer rely on what the eyes of our body can ascertain but on what God’s Spirit reveals to us in the depths of ourselves. This reflection started with referring to this feast…

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Among us, people, we often exchange services of different kinds. We go to a neighbor, a friend, a doctor, a teacher, a builder, asking them to provide us with whatever we need at any given time. And, we do the same… with God! Very often, our prayer to God takes the form of a petition – We bring to him all kinds of requests for ourselves and for people dear to us, or people we see in need. We trust that he will answer our needs, our dreams, our hopes. And he does so, very often. But have you realised that, often, God gives us things that we never asked for? He pours into our lives blessings and gifts that we would have never thought – or dared – to ask him for! The text of today’s gospel is an obvious example of this (John 14:23-29). On the eve of…

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  Looking at our lives, we sometimes pause to consider what is important to us. We may look at this or that aspect and we question what is really… essential! Our personal needs may first come to our minds. And, of course, our relationships with the people near and dear to us are most important. But… something is still missing… which can be found in a verse of today’s 1st reading (Acts 14:21-27). It speaks of the two apostles, Paul and Barnabas, and says: “Paul and Barnabas… committed the Elders of the communities to the Lord in whom they had put their trust”.  To be committed to the Lord and put our trust in him – is this not essential to our very being? Committed to the Lord by the people who love us, the people to whom we really matter – this is, in fact, the best gift they can give to us. Committed to the…

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A theology lesson in 4 Bible verses – this is what the text of this Sunday’s gospel offers us (John 10:27-30). Such a short text and so rich is the reality it describes. This 4th Easter Sunday is known as Good Shepherd Sunday as it focuses on Jesus, the Risen Lord, as our Shepherd. What the words describe, what the text affirms, is really amazing. It offers us a promise of belonging, of security, and a gift beyond what we could imagine: eternal life! “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them,  and they follow me.   I give them eternal life,  and they shall never perish;  no one will snatch them out of my hand.” Christ knows us, yes, just as we are, deeply, truly… He gives us eternal life, his own life, the very life that he shares with the Father. That is, of course, if… We listen to his voice…

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Reading the gospel texts, each one is inspired by them in his/her own way. Any given text, at different moments, may open up new perspectives and offer new messages. Today the long gospel text presents us with two different scenes (John 21:19-31). In the second one, we see Jesus with Peter – a scene quite special indeed and rich in insights. I read it again and… an unusual idea comes – the title I would give to this scene: ‘What God knows but… wants to be told again!’   Not once, not twice, but three times, Jesus asks a question from Peter. A searching question, one that is very personal, and… evocative… Every time Peter answers repeating the words: “Lord, you know that I love you.”   The third time, Peter adds the words: “Lord, you know everything…”   Peter is right: Jesus knows it but wants to hear it, he wants…

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  Repeating things – speaking again the words already said – we do it very often. To remind someone of something, to explain something voiced before, to make sure people have understood. We do it with people and for people, and we do it also… with God! Yes, it is something that is often part of our relating to God. Is it that we fear he has forgotten some of our requests? Is it that we think he likes to be reminded? Is it that we like to make sure that we have asked properly? Returning to God again and again, for whatever reason, is not bad. He may indeed be happy with our coming again to be in his presence! But… there may be a danger in repeating… The danger is that we, ourselves, may no longer be very attentive to what we say. We may be used to…

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On December 7, 2021 Sr. Maria Carmen celebrated 25 years of missionary commitment among the sisters, families and friends. Next day the celebrations continued with our brothers the Missionaries of Africa, Fr. Stephen Ofonikott, Fr. Stanley Lubungo, Fr. Stéphane Joulain who also celebrated 25 years of commitment with their missionary oath. The ceremony presided by Bishop Claude Rault took place at the Generalate. Here is an extract from an article on Sharing Trenta Aprile that Maria Carmen was kind enough to share with us. My vocation story begins with a spiritual experience through God’s words to Abram in Genesis 12: “Leave your native land and your father’s house and go to the land that I will show you”. Since then, it has been a journey in which the verbs “leave”, “go” and “show” have been an essential part of my life experience. LEAVING: I have always found it difficult and…

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A stone rolled away… A corpse… missing… “Strips of linen lying there”… Cloth wrapping the body “still lying in its place”… All these are seen, noted, but… No body lying there, NOBODY present! Yet, the gospel text tells us that when John had witnessed this scene, “He saw and believed.”  (John 20:1-9) Daily events… Regular meetings… Occasional encounters… Ordinary situations… Unexpected happenings… Unusual occasions… Overheard conversations… Surprising details… Which of these? All of these? At times… sometimes… could be… will be… the signs that could lead us to make the personal experience that John made. We will see and believe. We will NOT see any body – not ANYBODY – but we will perceive a presence. We will recognize the Risen Lord with us as surely as he was 21 centuries ago! source: www.image-i-nations.com  

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