United States Conference of Secular institutes

2016 Fall Mountaineer

Secular Institutes

Dear friends,
2016 is slowly winding down. On November 20 the Year of Mercy will
come to a conclusion but hopefully not the awareness nor practice of
this important virtue. Mercy will never go out of style because our
sinfulness (unfortunately) does not leave us either. We will always be
in need of mercy and will be called upon to bestow mercy.
Mercy is a gift to both the giver and receiver. Both parties find greater
peace as they participate in the divine act of forgiving. How meaningful
it is that November is also the time when we Catholics have a
month-long Memorial Day, remembering our loved ones who have
passed on.
Since we don’t know for sure their judgment, we have two days to
honor them: All Saints Day for all who have won the ultimate prize of
eternal union with God, and All Souls Day for those still undergoing
purification with the assurance that they will be rewarded with God’s
eternal love as well. All of these people have experienced the infinitely
rich mercy of the Father in spite of the fact that no one really
“deserves” forgiveness for turning our backs on our creator and
redeemer. And yet our very misery is our victory over the Father’s
heart. He as a father just cannot resist the helplessness and cries of his
children.
For this mercy which we have celebrated all year long, we say
“thanks.” For being called to our vocation as consecrated seculars, we
say “thanks.” For each of you I say
“thanks.”
A blessed and happy Thanksgiving!
Marcia Vinje

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