What is to become of us?
These were the words I overheard earlier this month as I sat in quiet reflection in the big Church at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods.
The sister (who I could not see, as she was behind me) was lamenting the passing of another Sister of Providence, her friend.
The question struck me. What is to become of us?
I’m not sure what Sister meant by this question, but it gave me pause and got me to thinking. What is our future: Sisters of Providence and Providence Associates? What is this path that Providence has laid out for us?
“Be assured that in leaving the past to the mercy of God and the future to God’s Providence you will derive from your offering very great peace and very great consolation.” — Saint Mother Theodore Guerin
Later that afternoon, I was walking on the grounds and the question came to mind again. “What is to become of us?”
I was walking near the cemetery and lamenting the loss of the older mature trees that used to line the road. As I reflected on the loss of the trees, it struck me that the loss of the trees resembles in many ways the loss of our aging sisters.
The trees, like the sisters, lived long beautiful lives and brought much beauty and joy to all who visited this place. The landscape of this place has changed and does not feel the same without them. Their loss is keenly felt.
As I walk the grounds, I see new growth in the places where those trees once stood. Wildflowers, grasses, and even a few young trees are sprouting.
What is our future? Is there new growth beginning? Perhaps some of it is through the relationship of the Sisters of Providence and Providence Associates. What is this path that Providence has laid out for us?
Those trees, though physically removed, still have roots that run under the surface of the soil that feed those grasses and wildflowers I saw on my walk. In the same way, the spirit of those lost sisters continue to feed the spirits of all who knew them and those yet to come to this place.
What is this path that Providence has planned for us? Let us find out together, Sisters of Providence and Providence Associates.
“This is the path traced by Providence. And I follow it.” — Saint Mother Theodore Guerin