EXPERIENCE OF THE NOVITIATE CANONICAL YEAR
“It is no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me” (Gal 2:20)
“The novitiate is a fundamental stage in the process of formation to the consecrated life. It aims at deepening the specific values of religious life, a life of prayer, as a response to the call of Christ incarnate in the history of humanity”.
We are first year novices, we are enjoying the new experience of the novitiate that we have been doing since the first day we arrived in the community. On the first day of the welcome, in the chapel we came across one of Saint Thomas Aquinas’ phrases: “Give me, Lord, the method and the ability to learn”.
Although at first we were afraid, fearful, anxious and curious to meet the new sisters of the community, we did not lack the courage to take another step on the new path.
Thanks be to God, after three weeks of integration, we felt more touched by the call of Christ. We made the retreat for the beginning of the novitiate and our preacher was Sister Maria Luis Baron. She gave us several biblical texts: St. Paul falling from the horse, the diversity of gifts and the silence of Mary that helped us during our retreat. The concluding Mass was celebrated by Fr. Julio, who in his homily reminded us that what matters is not the end, but the process of the journey.
On February 24th, feast of our Mother Foundress Ascension Nicol, we started the novitiate. During Mass, the priest in his sermon led us once again to reflect that the novitiate is an experience of God and with God; it is a journey of listening like Samuel who said, “Speak Lord, your servant is listening”, which helped us to be more attentive to the Lord’s call.
Up to now, the atmosphere has been favourable, we are enjoying the formation experience, confronting ourselves with domestic chores, the new form of liturgy, of expressing what we feel and who we are, of assuming our daily responsibilities, the witness of the Sisters who are transmitting to us the meaning of the canonical year, the new form of accompaniment and the classes that we are taking which are helping us to discover, to accept ourselves in relationship with ourselves and with others who each day give us a light of who we are. Thus preparing us for the life of mission in the future, to be more open to the world in the face of the difficulties that are presented to us.
We thank God for our founders and our Formators who are always helping us in the formation process, especially in valuing all the elements that are part of the canonical year.
My grace is sufficient for you, for in weakness my strength is fully revealed said St Paul. (2 Cor 12, 9)
Novices : Martinha Nambalo & Antonieta Faria