Dear Friends in Christ,
It is great to be back in Phoenix with you since I have recently returned from time away at my Motherhouse in Alma, Michigan and a visit with my family. As the summer heat is warming our faces and our hearts, I have the joy of telling you about our newly arrived Sisters in Phoenix. With gratitude, I welcome to Phoenix: Sister Mary Joy of the Father, SOLT, Sister Sabina Grace, MC and Sister Maria Crucis Garcia, RSM. Below are their photos:
Each has a delightful disposition with great enthusiasm as they delve into new exciting missions in the Diocese of Phoenix, where they have become our co-workers in the vineyard under the sun. We welcome them, and ask you all to pray for them as they become acclimated to Arizona in service of the Diocese and their local communities. They are a gift!
Speaking of gifts, the Carmelite Sisters of St. Dominic in Ecuador made vestments for the Pope’s recent visit.
In July, Pope Francis was traveling through various countries of Latin America, including Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay. He gave several addresses to the Clergy and Religious men and women, giving his strong spiritual direction. I would like to share an excerpt with you from his address to the Clergy and Religious men and women in Ecuador on July 8th, 2015:
Men and women religious, priests, seminarians, every day, return, make this journey back towards the gratuitousness with which God has chosen you. You did not pay an entrance fee to enter the seminary, to enter religious life. You did not deserve it. If any religious, priest, seminarian or nun here believes that they deserve it, raise your hand. Everything [was given] freely. And the life of a man or woman religious, a priest, a seminarian that goes on that path – now that we’re talking, bishops as well – must go on this path of gratuitousness, to return every day [and pray]: “Lord, today I did this, this was good, I had this difficulty, all this, but everything comes from you.” Everything is free. That gratuitousness, we are objects of gratuity of God.
In the same Address, Pope Francis reflects about the Virgin Mary at the foot of the Cross, for our benefit:
In the moment of the Cross in her faithfulness, She may have had the desire to say: “And they told me that this one would be a King? I was tricked!” She did not allow Herself to say that, because she was the woman who knew that she received everything freely. Some brotherly and fatherly advice: every night re-situate yourselves in this gratuity. And say: “Be it done to me, thank you because you gave me everything.”
Let us be grateful to God for our vocations, Religious Life and all the graces received throughout our lives and missions.
We have great opportunities for the Religious Sisters and Brothers to participate in events such as having our photos taken for a new Diocesan Photo Directory from September 23-26 at Queen of Peace Parish in Mesa, making and serving pizza at the St. Vincent de Paul Society on Friday, October 30, Celebrating Vocations and Consecrated Life both at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Scottsdale and St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Phoenix on All Saints Day, Sunday November 1, and an Advent Day for the Year of Mercy at the DPC on December 19. The All Saints Day event on November 1 is open to all! There will be more to come about the Vocations Celebration at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Scottsdale (8a.m. to 3 p.m.) and Celebrando la Vida Consagrada at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Phoenix (1p.m. – 7 p.m.).
Get Ready for The World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia from Sept. 22-25, 2015
God bless you all!
Your Sister in Christ,
Sister Anthony Mary Diago, RSM