Imagine having a panel of 20 sisters all over the world who could answer questions in a way that reflected their cultures and their particular congregational charisms. Wouldn't you like to pose a question for that group?
Well, that has been a reality since June, when Global Sisters Report set up The Life. Our goal was to further the global sisterhood by sharing approaches and solutions in pursuit of a better world. GSR recruited a panel of 20 sisters from around the world to share their thoughts and expertise by answering a question posed to the group each month.
GSR's monthly questions for the panel have been on spirituality, formation, ministries, collaboration and other topics. Questions ranged from the lighthearted — "How do you spend your Sundays?" — to the complex — "What challenges and opportunities do you see as leadership shifts from the Global North to the Global South?"
There has been a variety of answers from our panelists, who come from or work in Australia, Canada, Chile, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Philippines, the United States, Vietnam and Zambia. One sister from Mexico has lived in several countries and now serves in community leadership in Rome. Another is from India and serves in Zambia. A Nigerian sister is her community leader and lives in Ireland. Sisters from India and Nigeria are working in the United States. You can see why this panel would have a global viewpoint!
The GSR staff is excited about The Life, and there is always a little buzz in the air when it comes out each month.
That's what we think of it. Now, what do you think?
We have had many positive responses from readers. We would like to encourage interaction with our reading audience, so we invited you to respond to the discussion of one question by telling us how you keep your spiritual energy strong. A couple of readers weighed in:
"A nap during the day when possible, shared community life, especially over lunch, tea with a friend, celebrating birthdays, sharing jokes, keeping in contact with my six brothers and three sisters, walking in silence, listening to music, and consciously keeping God's love before me" (Sr. Claudia Romero, Company of Mary).
"Taking time every morning for reflection on the daily Scriptures (Lectio Divina) and journal about my prayer, my life, my struggles and joys. I take my prayer on long walks as nature and Scriptures resonate with the mystery I am pondering. Community prayer is another place where my spiritual energy flows freely and is supported by my sisters" (Sr. Andrea Westkamp, Benedictine Sisters of Virginia).
If you would like to respond to any of the questions, email us at email@example.com.
We intend to recruit a new panel for a second year; that means we will be recruiting another set of sisters from around the world. Think about whether you would like to nominate yourself or another good writer — but don't volunteer just yet! We will be sending out an invitation in March. We are always looking for new voices for GSR, but those who have written for us before certainly can consider participating.
But what you can do now is submit a question you would like to ask the current panelists. This is your chance! What question would you like to submit? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
[Ursuline Sr. Michele Morek is Global Sisters Report's liaison to sisters in North America. Her email address is email@example.com.]