Society Gathering 2010
In these days following the Society Gathering in October 2010, so many of the participants are speaking of their awareness of the presence of the Spirit in the gathering of our 102 sisters, and in the work achieved. We felt the strength in such a number of Sisters volunteering to attend – a number which is close to one third of our total group (353). There was a sense that God truly ‘trusted us with our moment in history’ (Breuggemann), and we responded strongly to Raphael’s words: ‘Life. Be in it with me, any moment, every moment, alert for God’s NOW’.
We acknowledge the foundational work done by the smaller group of about 40 who worked so creatively in the Dreaming workshop and in the inter-congregation Think Tank last year. From their work arose the concept and process of this gathering. We thank the Society Resource Group (Anne Lane, Pat Tully and Sue Richardson) who worked so hard to prepare and arrange the gathering. Terry Abraham, the Leader of the Presentation Union, gave an inspiring day on Mission “Hearts on Fire”, and Rollo Browne facilitated our Open Space process most professionally and effectively.
The final proposals of the October gathering will be the focus of Conversation Circles in the period leading to Society Congress (25-29 April 2011 at Baulkham Hills). These opportunities for conversation will be offered both within and across Congregations, and details will be circulated as soon as possible.
You may be interested to know that the proposals included:
a) replacing the current Justice Contacts with Mission Circles of Life and Communion based on the four areas of United Nations action – volunteers with an elected leader;
b) becoming one Congregation in Australia and PNG;
c) becoming part of the global Presentation family in the Union;
d) improving and developing the current Plenary Council structure;
e) expanding the current Plenary Council structure to include UN as well as other conversation circles;
f) improving communications by use of modern technology;
g) establishing an inclusive Society community of vowed and non-vowed members.
We felt the prayerful support and interest of many of our Sisters who were unable to be with us physically. In knowing and feeling the importance of our considerations for the Mission we all share, we felt blessed and called to go beyond the tried and true, the comfortable and familiar, to stretch our horizons and limits.
Bernadette Keating pbvm