The first missionary religious congregation for women in the history of the Church and the world is the Institute of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary founded in 1877 by BL. Mary of the Passion, now in the 139th year of its course.

Franciscan in its essence.
Missionary in its services
Mary - like in its approach.

» Dedicated to universal mission

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» And offer ourselves in challenging services

Invocation

Third Week of Advent

  

This Sunday used to be known as Gaudete Sunday because of the theme of joy that runs through the readings: “Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter Jerusalem!” (Zephaniah) “Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say Rejoice!” (Philippians) “…he proclaimed the good news to the people.” (Luke)
Zephaniah speaks of joy, gladness, courage, love.  We of the early 21st century need to hear these words of encouragement in the midst of greed, power struggles, war, destruction.  Jesus has taught us to face the suffering of our time, including our own small pains, with this joy, gladness, courage, and love because he is in our midst.
Our media show us almost insurmountable suffering but our hearts tell us that Jesus is among us.  We know him wherever we find someone loving another, bringing peace to another, sharing in the future with another. 
Think of the small kindnesses extended by those around you this past week.  How has someone befriended you, helped you, encouraged you?  Who has been a blessing to you?  In the week to come, how can you be a blessing to someone else?  There are so many good people in the world who do not make the headlines.  Do see you God's loving hand in their kindness?  Such kindness can offset a lot of this world's violence and greed.  Pray that our national leaders and our world enemies are touched by our small moments of praying for their change of heart.
 
Divine Light, at no time have you ever been separate from all that is.
You do not stand outside of creation, but are the very light and life within us. 
Just to be is to exist in and through your love. 
This insight amazes us and helps us to see not only how deeply we are connected to you,
but how deeply we are connected to one another…
Help us to live in awareness of the sacredness of those connections
and to express our awareness in loving attitudes and behavior…
 
                                                                - Judy Cannato, RADICAL AMAZEMENT, p. 55.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  

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