Nurture the Soul

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Lent: A Time to Nurture the Soul: 

Lent: A Time to Nurture the Soul Mt. St. Mary Alumnae Evening of Reflection February 27, 2007

Overview: 

Overview Check-in/Ice-Breaker Opening Prayer Content: Probe our understanding of tonight’s PURPOSE Share some reflections about being WOMEN Provide some “tools” for Lenten Prayer CLOSING

Lenten “Journey”: 

Lenten “Journey” A definite beginning point… Mixture of paths, roadways, curves; Challenges of various obstacles; transitions; Stopping for rest – Intentional Choices; ENDING point… to only BEGIN AGAIN… (Group Activity)

“A Time”: 

“A Time” Biblical connotation Our purposes = opportunity to BEGIN… Not necessarily a specified period Intended to be ongoing Integration

Nurture: 

Nurture Awareness of emptiness, longing; MAKE time to “be in the PRESENT;” Assess WHAT IS… Discern options Feed = “food” for LIFE

Soul: 

Soul Holy Space; God-Life in our Humanity; Language of VULNERABILITY and AUTHENTICITY; Capacity for life, suffering, forgiveness; Seed for intimacy, companionship… (Group Activity)

Vocation to be WOMEN : 

Vocation to be WOMEN Reference: Gift from the Sea (Lindbergh) Question: How do I create empty space? “Woman must come of age by herself – she must find her true center alone.”

Sabbath Keeping: 

Sabbath Keeping “Sabbath” – “Shabbat” in Jewish thought Translation = God’s time… Donna Schaper, Minster for the United Church of Christ “Sabbath is a way of living, not a thing to have or a list to complete.”

Sabbath Keeping (continued): 

Sabbath Keeping (continued) Not meant to be prayers, deeds, activities we feel obligated to address; “Sacred time of leisurely meeting Our God;” Options: simple quiet, prayer, reading, conversation, listening to music, recreational activity, etc. (Group Activity)

Unique Possibilities: 

Unique Possibilities Sabbath remembering… Personal reflection of “journey” as woman, as daughter, as friend, as neighbor, as spouse, as parent; Personal insights/learnings as member of various communities, as co-worker, as “team player” in various groups, as mentor, etc. (Group Activity)

Unique Possibilities (continued): 

Unique Possibilities (continued) Sabbath de-cluttering… *What is lost? For what purpose? Mind, soul, heart of unnecessary concerns; Daily routine of purposeless activity; “Control” of others’ lives (spouse, children, friends, etc.) Unworn clothing, unused furniture, etc. (Group Activity)

Helpful “Tools” for Lent: 

Helpful “Tools” for Lent Symptoms of Inner Peace (*Maria Rosario Gaite, RSM – Guam) A Different Kind of Fasting (*Shirley Murphy, RSM – Springfield) Suggestions for Developing a Wholistic Spirituality (Thomas Merton)

“Resolution” Considerations: 

“Resolution” Considerations What do I long for in my soul? How can I cultivate a spirit of “Sabbath time” in my life? What structures will need to be re-ordered? How can I make this Lent be “a new beginning” of the rest of my life? With whom can I share periodically to help “call me” to my intentions?

Closing: 

Closing Thank YOU for enriching my life this evening; Together, we have looked more deeply at “Lent – time – nurturing – soul;” We have truly prayed about our role as women – blessings and challenges; and, We have looked at some options for weaving these insights as we begin Lent.

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