Sunday, July 14, 2013

Burning Questions from the Opening Ritual

We posted our burning questions
in our meeting space
On Friday night we were invited to reflect on the following questions: 
  • What burning questions about mission and ministry do we need to ask at this time?
  • ¿Cuáles preguntas referentes a la misión o al ministerio debemos hacer en este momento?
We then wrote our questions on index cards and offered them in our opening ritual. What follows is a collection of these questions.  Thanks to Maria Cimperman and Juliet Mousseau for grouping the questions by common threads.

Directions and Practicalities
  • How are we to realize our ministry in the future if we are so concerned with bringing in a “good” salary to our congregations?
  • ¿Somos realmente un testimonio vivo, un evangelio encarnado y una esperanza en medio de donde estamos? ¿Por qué cada vez es más difícil tener vocaciones y deserciones?
  • Se tiene un límite de edad para ingresar más vocaciones que surgen ser mayores. Algunas son indocumentadas. Tienen deudas grandes por la Universidad. ¿Cómo hacer o qué hacer con ellas?
  • Como iglesia, ¿cómo acompañamos a los más pobres en nuestras comunidades y no solo los invitamos hacer voluntarias o dar un servicio, donde algunas veces se sienten criticados?
  • Do I have enough love for my ministries? Do I become a witness among people I work with? Does my mission bring me close to God’s people?
  • Where are we most needed as young women religious? How can we work together in those spaces?
  • How can we as women religious become core communities for the people of God, energizing us all for the mission of Jesus?
  • Which lines are necessary to be crossed for us to continue living the gospel truth?
  • How to discern ministry from my gifts, my needs, my timing, and at the same time fit the community’s mission (which we often can’t articulate)?
  • The mission before Vatican II Council was to those who did not know Jesus. That is not the same right now. What is our mission now to the people in the diverse environment?
  • In light of the complexities of our world today, how do we strive forward in the liminal space (the dawn of the future) responding to our communal desires? (mission~ideal, ministry~reality, mission~ministry)
  • How are we called by the future to live the Gospel in response to both the needs of the present and future?
  • How much am I willing to compromise for the sake of the mission? Do I need to be more intentional?
  • How do we balance ministry to self, ministry to our sisters, and ministry to all God’s creation?
  • How can we build up support when we are so few younger-newer members?
  • How do we balance our desire to devote ourselves to ministry with the needs of our aging communities?
  • How can we minister together with different communities and share resources?

Mission and Vision
  • Jesus is the Mission…How can we younger/newer members envision and live out his mission without feeling overwhelmed by the decline and loss related to decreased membership in our communities?
  • How can we find the Spirit of God at work amidst the changing reality (and decreasing #’s) of religious life and how can we vision with and follow the Spirit?
  • ¿De qué Dios hablamos a nuestro pueblo hoy?
  • In a time of ever increasing human need for God, for justice and peace, how do we go about it, both locally and globally, with the few people we are? How do we continue what has begun? How do we focus on mission?
  • Whose voices do we welcome in the inner most heart of our hearts?
  • Where is the place that God calls us today in our world? What are some needs in developing countries when a group of community or religious women want to serve?
  • How do we keep alive our missions and ministries as we journey into the future of religious life?
  • What does it mean to be prophetic?
  • As a newer member, how can I encourage my sisters to dream new dreams and visions with me? (considering age/fewer new women)
  • “The mission has the church/congregation, not that the congregation has a mission.” 1. How does this statement resonate with those present here? 2. What does the new universe story have to do with mission?
  • What is our mission today at this time in the midst of many things going on in our world? How can we join together in being today’s mission the Holy Spirit is calling forth?
  • Where is the Spirit moving our hearts to be?
  • Is our mission evident? If not, how can we make our mission manifest?
  • How are we called to bring a deeper awareness for the need for a strong spiritual foundation and fill the needs of those who thirst for that spiritual fulfillment?
  • What needs in our world are calling for our attention? How are we going to address them?
  • How are we to live (which includes ministry but also community and prayer) in a way that best responds to the cries of this our time?

  • ¿Cuál es el lugar de la vida religiosa hoy? ¿Cuál es el papel de la mujer consagrada en la iglesia hoy y del futuro?
  • ¿Sigue siendo la vida religiosa significativa para el mundo hoy? 
  • ¿Estoy consciente del llamado en vida? ¿Cómo vivo la gracia en medio del pueblo de Dios? ¿Cuál es mi posición delante de Dios en este llamado?
  • ¿El lugar en el que estoy (estamos) responde a mi llamado inicial?
  • ¿Cuál es la misión para la que Dios nos preparó ahora, en estos tiempos de cambio y nuevas ideologías?
  • ¿Cómo encontrar el camino donde se viva la misión profética de la vida religiosa en un ministerio que la Iglesia institucional “Jerarquía” no acepta?
  • Tomando como ejemplo de Papa Francisco,  ¿qué re-ajustes o cómo podemos recrear nuestra misiones y ministerios como vida religiosa?
  • ¿De qué forma debemos vivir nuestro profetismo hoy para transformar nuestra realidad de pobreza y violencia en el mundo?
  • How can we become more about mission and focus less on the ministry (the work) that we do? And how can we let people see that we are women of mission and not just focus on the work we do?
  • How can I be contemplative and active in these days? How can I speak about God when God seems so far?

  • Where in the world would we not go?
  • How are we called to use our treasure (time, talent, property, financial resources) for the kin-dom of God—those in poverty and the margins?
  • In our increasingly polarized society and Church, how can we continue to be the prophetic voice/presence while also working towards healing the divides? Or at least bring people to a greater ability to listen with respect?
  • How do we engage mission in the 21st century in REAL collaboration with our lay partners?
  • As our urban centers continue to grow, it seems so does the spiritual hunger and thirst of the laity. How can we retell the Gospel in a way that resonates with those needs?
  • With our numbers decreasing, how can we as women religious enlarge our circles of “membership” to meet the needs of those we are called to serve?
  • How do we form sustainable models of ministry, which creatively meet the needs of the world today? How can we change or begin to change the mind set of society from individualism to a real sense of community—with all in mind?
  • How will our Church honor the call to ministry of women, laity, those who are different or oppressed?
  • What is the space of intersection between: What gifts/passions/resources do we/I have to offer? And What are the human/Church/world needs where I/we are?
  • How can we do our ministry, according to/reading the signs of the times or signs of the market? Como vamos a hacer maestro ministerios de acuerado a los signos de los tiempos o del Mercado?
  • Does the church need us to step back so others may grow and lead and serve?
  • How do/can we really reach out to those most in need?
  • How can we (continue to) keep ourselves open to the desires and invitations of God heard through the most vulnerable and respond wholeheartedly in an ever-changing world?
  • How can the Church be relevant for young people today?
  • How can we make an impact/change in today’s reality? How can we work more together with other religious denominations and rejected people such as gays, lesbians, and divorced?

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