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Retreat builds community among younger religious

Kaleidoscope retreatants

July 4-11, 2010, nineteen sisters from eight different congregations and one friar from the Central Province came together for a Kaleidoscope retreat entitled “Dominican Life Remembered and Renewed: A Reflection on the Four Pillars.” Responding to the desire of sisters, the retreat was framed with 30 minutes of communal contemplation in the morning and evening, and the twice-daily preaching and its challenges allowed for the sharing of heart and mind with one another. In keeping with the Kaleidoscope goals of developing relationships and providing a support network, the retreat ended with a day of prayer and play in the Washington, DC area. Participants heartily agreed that the retreat was a blessed gift and highly encouraged offering it again in the future. Below is a reflection on the experience of the retreat by some of the participants:

From Mission San Jose, San Rafael, and Tacoma,
From Springfield, Sinsinawa, and Central Province,
From Grand Rapids and Adrian, Catherine de’Ricci and Peace,

Sisters and brother gathered
In silence and in Word
To pray and to play,
To remember and to renew
Our life in Dominic

We came—many in transition,
Some having celebrated jubilee,
Others anticipating profession
And one soon to become a novice;
We came—tired, anxious, weary and stretched,
From a long year of faithful service;

We left—renewed, refreshed, and ready
To again give ourselves completely to the
Mission to which we’d been called:
To praise, to bless, and to preach
That Jesus Christ is Lord.

A week of words:
About study and disputatio
About friendship and freedom
And being open in the face of uncertainty;

Words about miracles and re-missioning…
That no one is beyond reach;
Words from Don Goergen, Karl Rahner,
Hosea, and Matthew

Words about nets and moving
From event to process
From disillusionment to hope
From brokenness to forgiveness

Because God continues to allure us,
Inviting us into the labyrinth
At whose center is the Word
Echoing the heartbeat of God
A week remembering and renewing
Ending in a prayer for peace
Near the Tomb of the Unknowns

Gathered in the nation’s capital,
this unknown community from across the country,
Newly rooted in friendship and faith,
Was sent out as the 72 disciples of Jesus had been,
Going in confidence, lacking for nothing,
Knowing God would give the gift of preaching.

Kaleidoscope Standing Committee is a committee of the Dominican Alliance and Dominican Federation whose purpose is threefold: 1.) to promote opportunities for relationship building; 2.) to network, especially for the sake of mission; 3.) to foster leadership. Members of Kaleidoscope are sisters who are either 55 years of age or younger and/or 10 years finally professed or less.