© Imelda Maurer, cdp
‘The Christmas season is here and I want to share news of Sister __________. She was happy to receive your Christmas card. Sister frequently enjoys attending Mass at her favorite parish with her family and friends and/or her Sisters.’ There was a full color photograph of Sister engaged with another Sister, and some more general news about this elder.
Though not a direct quote, this was the essence of a message from a Sister-friend from years past. Our physical paths have diverged and this Sister, a member of a different Congregation, is now in a nursing home. The letter was signed by one of her Sisters in elected leadership whom I do not know personally, along with her cell phone number!
What moved me as much as hearing about my friend were the values reflected in this action by her Sisters. I’ve talked before in this blog about the primacy and importance of relationships throughout our life span. To me, this letter embodied an appreciation of this primacy. Sending this letter to all of Sister’s friends keeps her in the circle of her own community and beyond.
I don’t know how many letters went out in my friend’s name, but I do know two things: that letter touched everyone who received it, and the value of relationships was acknowledged and honored. In this practice, ‘procedures’ are aligned with ‘values’ or ‘vision’. It is a delightful example of the environment supporting the vision. I am grateful.