We do not speak of seeds without a sower, we cannot think of sowing if there is not first a fertile soil, so that the seed does not scatter. Before we go deeper into our reflection on Blessed Ascension Nicol our mother and foundress, let us be guided by the word of God, the life that makes us live:

“Many people from everywhere following looking for Jesus. When there was already a crowd around him, he spoke to them using the following parable: “Once upon a time there was a man Sower. As he was sowing seed, one fell by the roadside, was trampled underfoot, and the birds ate it all up. Another fell on stony ground and, as soon as it sprouted, it dried up because there was no moisture. Another fell among the thorns, and the thorns, as they grew, choked it. But another part of the seed fell on good soil, developed and bore fruit at the rate of a hundred grains per seed.” And finally, raising his voice, he exclaimed, “He who has ears, let him listen!  (Lk 8:4-8).

In the light of the Gospel passage, what can we say about Blessed Ascension Nicol? Is Blessed Ascension Nicol a seed or a Sower? Or fertile soil? With her life and way of being, Ascension Nicol knew how to be seed in the hands of the Sower and good seed sown in fertile soil. Her example of life showed this reality in the human and Christian promotion of women and children, her total dedication to the service of the most in need. Her firm faith will lead her, together with Ramon Zubieta to make visible a garden of roses at the service of the Kingdom of God. This garden is known today as the Congregation of the Missionary Dominican Sisters of the Rosary, whose charism consists of “evangelizing poor people in those missionary situations where the Church needs us most”.

It is remarkable that the seed, which was Blessed Ascension Nicol, not only fell on good soil, but also produced and continues to bear fruit in us, her daughters who, following her example, serve the Church and humanity in various dimensions, in the ecclesial, educational, social and health fields, thus, perpetuating her eternal memory. The seeds of the mission are clear and distinct, it is up to us to continue sowing without worrying about the day of the harvest, because to love is to give ourselves without expecting a reward. We do not act for ourselves, but for Jesus and for love of the less favored who are our preferential option.

In the parable of The Sower in Luke’s Gospel, the decisive elements are the excellent quality of the seed and the readiness of the soil. The Sower sows excellent quality seed and does so with the generosity and hope of those who love their field of cultivation. He spares neither effort nor seed; he throws it even in places where it would not be possible to expect any result, since his interest is not to conserve but to hope that this seed will make all the sectors of his field bear fruit. The soil responds differently according to the “quality” of the land. The disposition of the land refers to the attitude of the people. Some allow themselves to be cultivated and offer adequate soil where the seed takes deep roots, others offer land where the seed is lost due to excessive hardness, carelessness, superficiality or negligence.

So, also in the Missionary Dominican Sisters of the Rosary, we can identify ourselves as our Mother Foundress: SEEDS, SOWERS OR FERTILE SOIL… We cannot choose the land where we will sow the seed, the best thing is to sow the seed and God will act on it and will take into account our preferential option dictated by our charism, which is THE POOR.

As one of the manuals that help us reflect on our Congregation tells us from the Banian Tree, in its fourth theme The earth the place of the poor: “Where we must sow; we must not forget that our Congregation was born in the place of the poor, of the one who is not taken into account”. No matter how much it costs to reach the same land, whether we have to go by sea like our founders at that time, or by air like the sisters who brought the mission here.

Someone once said. “Much is preached about love and solidarity, but inequalities continue to grow around the world. Society is increasingly divided. In the past it was divided into a class struggle between rich and poor. Today, social conflicts increasingly take the form of racism, sex, religious rivalries, xenophobia, homophobia. It doesn’t seem to do much good to talk about God in today’s world.”

This person is partly right. But in the parable of the Sower, Jesus invites us to be persistent, to keep thinking positive. The parable encourages us to take risks, to try new things, not to be discouraged by the context and not to worry so much about the outcome. Jesus asks us to trust, because God is at work. The important thing here is to understand that we are only part of a process. Our part is to sow the seeds. The process of growing and bearing fruit is part of God. Sooner or later, they will sprout and that is the hope that moves us.

We can note one of the hardest blows that our dear foundress Mother Ascension Nicol suffered at the time of the death of the Founding Father was that she felt powerless and at the same time responsible for carrying on the work they had begun together. But, she continued to promote, with serenity and fortitude, the missionary work that the Lord had inspired and cared for with care. These were years of expansion, with small foundations that were born as seeds and quickly grew strongly.

The Word of God is at work in human history, in people who cultivate a love of solidarity, attentive listening to their brothers and sisters, and generous and selfless service to the excluded. It is in times of darkness that we must be light. It is in times of injustice and corruption that we are called to speak prophetically in defense of ethical values. God needs us to be good soil, where a good seed can bear fruit.

There are people who will receive and understand the Word of God better by our attitudes than by our words. There are people who will receive the Word of God better through a song than through preaching. This perspective makes us see that we must plant seeds everywhere, ministering the Word of God with the opportunities that He has given us.

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