The fifth day of the Chapter was spent considering various things related to the financial resources of the Congregation. Two beautiful symbols were given to us at the start of the day to help focus our attention. During prayer, prepared by sisters from Spain/Italy, each sister was given a lovely scarf as a symbol of our connectedness and solidarity. “The Housewarming,” a work of art depicting a very multicultural family around a dinner table, dog included, highlighted universality, justice and sharing values which related to the use of our finances. Both scarf and “Housewarming” were rich starting points.
Immaculate Nakato presented a report on the Development Office, its challenges, successes and future plans. Using Power Point and well elaborated documents, Maria Luisa Antolin, General Bursar, gave abundant information about our demographics and funds. She reminded us that all that concerns finances is intrinsically related to our call to the mission of reparation.
Rafael Rodriquez de Tembleque Carrere and Norman Martel Picardo, two financial experts of Grupo A&G, spent the rest of the day with us. We met in small discussion groups, reported back to the assembly and received responses from Maria Luisa, Rafael and Norman.
During morning prayer the next day, we were invited to stand with hands cupped over our hearts to receive all that poured into us throughout our lives. Then, as we slowly opened our fingers, we let everything flow out symbolically for the healing of the earth.
After that we revisited some unfinished work. Once this was finished, Piluca spoke about the important moment of transition we were entering. We were about to take time for personal reflection to get in touch with our thoughts and feelings about all that we had done in the previous days in view of formulating the agenda of the chapter. So, in a certain sense the mandates of the present General Council were ending because we were moving toward future planning. At Piluca’s invitation, Christine, Dolores, Immaculate and Irma stood at the center of the room. Each one of us blessed each of them. It was a deeply sacred and touching moment.
We spent days listening, considering and conversing in three languages. We have worked hard, grown tired, relished meals, tea and coffee and sweets too. We have laughed and drunk in the beauty around us. Now, can you can image how much we looking forward to tomorrow, a day off?