Several years ago one of our sisters from Italy was spending some time in Boston. One day she was telling us about her community in Italy, and she said enthusiastically, "I love my community!"
I thought of that today and I suddenly felt a wonderful feeling of gratitude, and I too could say, I love my community!
Living in a religious community is very challenging. It can be quite difficult at times. Here we are, brought together by the call of God, and sometimes it seems like a strange mix of people. We can annoy each other and get in each other's way--it's all those little things that can cause the most trouble.
But today I had a wonderful experience of support from another sister, in the form of a great conversation that helped me reflect on a painful episode of mis-communication caused by an error. That kind of wonderful reflecting together--just by talking about something in a caring way--helps me to learn and grow, and also helps me in turn to do what I can to build up the community in love.
I've so often taken these wonderful sisters for granted, just like family members can easily do. But these "stronger" moments remind me of something more: when beyond the ordinary tasks of the day something happens that removes the veil from our eyes and we see the holiness of those around us. I live with many holy sisters and it is such a great privilege. Even those who are broken in some way still bear Jesus inside them. Yes indeed, I love my community and thank God for the grace to be a member!