Sacred Heart Schools International Conference Addresses Contemplation

Sacred Heart Schools International Conference Addresses Contemplation

The Fifth International Conference of Heads of Sacred Heart Schools was held in Mexico City 21 – 25 October 2015.  Principals Helen Sinclair (Stuartholme), Hilary Johnston – Croke (Kincopal Rose Bay), Maureen Ryan (Sacre Coeur) and Province Director of Mission Sandie Cornish attended. The conference theme concerned educating for interiority and contemplation in a complex world. Each day began with prayer and ended with a guided reflection on the day by Lucila Madero RSCJ. Key inputs were: Enlightenment: the Meaning of a Contemplative Path in the Face of our Complex Reality by Pilar Cardo RSCJ How to Help our Young People Come into Contact with Reality by Jorge Rocha and Juan

Mater Admirabilis Contemplative in Action

Mater Admirabilis Contemplative in Action

One of the qualities of leadership that the Province Framework for Formation for Mission seeks to foster is contemplative leadership.  Province Director of Mission, Sandie Cornish reflects on Mater Admirabilis as a model of contemplative leadership, drawing on the different depictions of Mater painted by Pauline Perdrau over the years. Mater Admirabilis Model of Contemplative Leadership A collection of these paintings, collected by Margaret Phelan, the Director of General Archives of the Society of the Sacred Heart, can be viewed here.    

Welcoming Migrants & Refugees

Australian Catholic Bishops Conference banner for Migrant and Refugee Sunday 2015

The Catholic Church in Australia celebrates Migrant & Refugee Sunday on the last Sunday in August.  The message of Bishop Vincent Long, Delegate for the Australian Catholic Migrant and Refugee Office, for this occasion can be read here. Esmey Herscovitch RSCJ marks Migrant & Refugee Sunday 2015 by reflecting on the readings for the day.  She asks “Where are our hearts?”   The one thing I remember from a talk many years ago on the new code of Canon Law i.e. Church law, is that laws are made to protect peoples’ rights and freedoms and not to bind and constrict. Today’s readings focus to a large extent on law and observance. The first reading from

Seeds of New Life

sunflowers in a field

“Truly, I tell you, unless the grain of wheat falls to the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.” John 12: 24 What might it mean for us to fall to the earth and die? St Paul literally fell off his high horse and landed on the earth. This event on the road to Damascus marked the death of Saul and the beginning of the new life of Paul. St Ignatius of Loyola was hit by a cannonball which ended his old life as a soldier and put him on a pilgrim path. Perhaps you too have had an experience in life that

Remembering MH17

sunflowers in a field

As we mark the first anniversary of Sr Phil Tiernan RSCJ’s death, our hearts go out to the friends and relatives of all those who died in the downing of the MH17. Each one was special and much loved. God had a unique call for each one. The first anniversary of a death is an important moment in the journey of grief and healing. The pain of losing our sister so suddenly and in such a violent manner in the downing of MH17 is still with us. We still struggle with the meaning of this event. We hope that the media treats the ongoing grief of the bereaved with respect

Laudato Si!

photo of trees in the fog at Stuartholme by Sandie Cornish

Pope Francis’ much anticipated encyclical on the environment has arrived!  Lauadto Si – On the Care of Our Common Home – takes its title from the famous canticle of St Francis of Assisi. Like Pope Francis, the Society of the Sacred Heart has recognized the ecological crisis as a major priority. The first chapter of Laudato Si contemplates what is happening to our common home, the earth. Chapter 2 presents a Biblical vision of creation, and Chapter 6 stresses the potential of Christian spirituality to motivate and support appropriate responses.  These are excellent chapters to take into our prayer as we begin to consider the analysis and directions for action

Christ, my hope, has risen: he goes before you into Galilee

Christ, my hope, has risen: he goes before you into Galilee

With the Mass of the Lord’s Supper we enter the Easter triduum. Traditionally it is a special day for priests, as it is considered the inauguration of the ordained ministry. Vatican II emphasized that everyone who is baptized shares in the offices of priest, prophet, and king, so today is a good time to reflect on how we can exercise these offices or ministries. The Society of the Sacred Heart adopts a contemplative approach to the world, and this is a way of exercising our priesthood.  When we gaze with love upon the world, and offer our prayers of intercession for others and for the world, we act as link

Day of Prayer, Reflection & Action Against Trafficking

detail from icon of St Josephine Bakhita Her feast day is World Day for Prayer, Reflection & Action Against Human Trafficking

The World Day of Prayer, Reflection and Action Against Human Trafficking will be celebrated for the first time on Sunday 8 February 2015, the Feast of St Josephine Bakhita.  The Day has been declared in response to a request from women religious to Pope Francis. The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and Catholic Religious Australia are getting behind it and have produced a range of useful resources for schools, parishes, religious communities and groups.  The Society of the Sacred Heart is a long time supporter of Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans and New Zealand Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans.  We encourage you to join in prayer, reflection and

135 Years of RSCJ Presence

Celebrating 135 years of RSCJ in Aotearoa New Zealand

19 January marks the 135th anniversary of the arrival of the first Religious of the Sacred Heart in Aotearoa New Zealand, and thus the beginning of the RSCJ presence in what is now the Australia New Zealand Province. This year is also the 75th anniversary of the beatification of Philippine Duchesne, whose 30th anniversary of her canonization will take place in 2018.Our Province has a special link to Philippine.  She took the Society of the Sacred Heart to the USA and RSCJ from the USA brought the Society to Aotearoa New Zealand.  They were the first RSCJ in what is now the Australia New Zealand Province. The graphics in the Province Orientation Handbook 2015 reflect