I’m back from Lima, Peru!

Some of the participants at the meeting. I’m in the front row, second to the left of the banner.


Ok, to be honest, I have been back from Lima for nearly two weeks. The 6th International Meeting of Marianist Lay Communities was a great success. The success came not only from the excellent hospitality of our Peruvian hosts, but also from the depth of reflection and sharing among delegates, guests, and observers from around the world. The theme of the meeting was “Faith of the Heart in the Heart of the World”. The process of the meeting was intentional in connecting mind and heart through much personal reflection and small group sharing. Yes, there was time devoted to business matters but the focus was on the gifts and challenges of living and sharing our faith as lay women and men in the world. 

It was evident at our meeting that the spirit of Pope Francis has caught on internationally. Here is a piece I wrote for the National Catholic Reporter blog, NCR Today.

The conclusion of the assembly also marked the conclusion of my term as international President of our Marianist Lay Communities. After all of the intense work in the weeks preceding the meeting, I was expecting to come home with all the worries and burdens magically lifted. I was not expecting the intense physical, emotional, and mental draining that happened instead. I still need to take time to enter fully into this time of transition; in thankfulness for all that has been, and with openness to what the future will hold. 

Of course, one immediate goal is to get this blog going again! 🙂

Romes clergy tailors find a subdued mood under low-key Pope Francis | National Catholic Reporter

Romes clergy tailors find a subdued mood under low-key Pope Francis | National Catholic Reporter.

Dear friends,

I’m back from Lima, but still in recuperating mode. All the energy expended in the weeks before the meeting plus the meeting itself took more of a toll than I expected. I have much to share in the days ahead, but just need some time to process all that has been before I lunge into all that will be. 😉

In the meanwhile, here’s a great piece from the National Catholic Reporter on a topic that always fascinated me – and not in a good way. There is a new man in town, and his simplicity is shaming cardinals , bishops and priests who desire to wrap themselves in princely garb. Pope Francis sent a message to the newly appointed Cardinals preparing for their upcoming installation, “I ask you, please, to receive this designation with a simple and humble heart. And, while you must do so with pleasure and joy, ensure that this sentiment is far from any expression of worldliness or from any form of celebration contrary to the evangelical spirit of austerity, sobriety and poverty.”

Apparently, our good man from Buenos Aires recycled the robes from his predecessor when he was granted the Cardinal reds in 2001! The simplicity of Francis is good news for all who eschew excessive pomp and clericalism. Apparently it is bad news for the high end clerical tailors.