Written by Sister Jan Kilian, this blog will give an understanding of what it’s like to be Franciscan. Living out the spirit of Saint Francis, we see all God’s creation as brother and sister. We, Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls, are committed to building relationships and community, ministering wherever there is greatest need, promoting justice and healing Mother Earth’s wounds. My writings will give a glimpse of the compassion, spirituality, interconnectedness and goodness of living Franciscan.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Harnessing the POWER of LOVE

By Sister Michelle L’Allier

Some day, after we have mastered the winds and the waves, the tides and gravity, we will harness for God the energies of love. And then, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.
--Pierre Teilhard De Chardin

Easter Blessings! I give thanks that the Easter Season is 50 days long, coinciding with the emergence of spring. Here in Minnesota it’s been a tumultuous transition from winter to spring with flooding in the Red River Valley and concurrent drought where I live in the Twin Cities.

Reflecting on the beauty and challenge of nature’s rhythms, I recognize the same beauty and challenge present in human relationships as well. Chardin invites us to “harness for God the energies of love;” Jesus witnesses to this path as he lived faithfully unto death, laying down his life in love, followed by rising to new resurrected life. Those of us who follow his way as Christians continue to learn how to live on in God’s love.

Our community of Franciscan Sisters, too, has been moving through the passage of death to new life—we buried four of our Sisters last month. It was a Lenten letting go for us who had come to know, love, and share life with these wisdom women in their 90’s. Each one was ready to enter fullness of life with God, showing us the way with great grace.

Sister Loretto Schneider
, for example, influenced my professing as a Secular Franciscan after college. She served as Spiritual Assistant to our emerging fraternity of idealistic young Franciscan men and women, and encouraged me beyond my comfort zone and into unfamiliar waters. We lived the Gospel life, experimenting with how to translate Gospel values in the marketplace of everyday life. One of the ways I experienced the transformative power of love was in our fraternity’s risk to tend to the beginnings of Listening House of St. Paul, a drop-in center for men and women on the streets.

Years later, Listening House continues to flourish, and I found my way to religious life within the Franciscan family as a Franciscan Sister of Little Falls. For all of this, I give thanks to God, mindful of what Margaret J. Wheatley says about the power of love:

What gives power its charge, positive or negative, is the quality of relationships. Those who relate through coercion, or from disregard for the other person, create negative energy. Those who relate to others and who see others in their fullness create positive energy. Love in organizations, then, is the most potent source of power we have available.
Cited in Bennett Sims, Servanthood: Leadership for the Third Millennium

As you and I learn to harness “the energies of love,” may we share this “potent source of power” bringing it to bear in our interpersonal relationships, in our organizations and in our world.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful entry, Sr. Cordy. Thank you for inviting the girls to be part of your blog. It turned out great. We will miss you sooooooo much too. We will expect you to join us when the harvest is ready :)
Lots of Love to you,