United States Conference of Secular institutes

Mountaineer – Fall 2023

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Secular Institutes

Dear Friends,
At our annual conference this past September at the Holy Family Passionist Retreat Center in Connecticut, we were fed powerful food for meditation on Living Out Our Radical Witness–the theme of the conference. But first–what a great joy it was to spend time with fellow members of secular institutes both actual and virtual, and members of the clergy together in worship, at meetings, during meals, and in casual conversation. On Friday night the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, Fr. John O’Neill our Vice President gave a mesmerizing homily focusing on Mary who, in total trust, said yes to God’s call until we see her standing at the cross. But Mary brought Christ to her neighbor: first going to help her cousin Elizabeth, later taking action after noticing that they were out of wine at Cana. Love God, and love your neighbor by helping him. Mary: the perfect role model for us. Fr. John Campoli, our presenter, emphasized God’s presence with us in
everything that happens to us, and that He loves us and is gazing at us at every moment in life. Trust that God is in the messiness of life, just as we as seculars live in the messiness of life.
Bishop Rivituso in his presentation told the story of his being notified by the Vatican that Pope Francis had named him a bishop and at that very moment, seeing the large crucifix in front of him, realizing that he was being asked to give all as Jesus gave all–and he knew he had to accept. Discussions of the Eucharistic Revival and initial conversations about the Jubilee Year of Consecration in 2025 and its themes stimulated thinking and planning.
With wishes for a beautiful and productive fall in the service of the Lord.
Sue Larkin


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