A Prolonged Family Stay at the Mother House

It’s the first time since I’ve left the novitiate that I had the opportunity to spend time at Kermaria …. for health purposes. I am happy to share with you a few discoveries or reinforced convictions.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Coming back from Cameroon where I lived among young African Sisters and where the majority of the population is young, I plunged into a reality very current in France nowadays – that of aging. To live daily among our elderly Sisters at Saint Joseph’s community helped me to become aware of what is awaiting all of us in the near future.

Kermaria: a place where fraternal love is being practiced

To look after a sick person, take care of the one who has fallen and may have a fracture, listen to the one who needs to talk, take someone’s arm for a walk together, give the cane or the walker, stroll with the one in a wheelchair, visit the one who cannot go out or who lives at La Sainte Famille, drive someone to an appointment, lead a group activity, give priority to welcoming each and every one, leave one’s community for service at Kermaria, being patient and begin anew every day: all these small, daily and ordinary gestures accomplished with so much love!

I loved this expression often heard in the hallways at certain hours of the day: the festival of walking sticks and to which I participated so some extent.

Kermaria: a place of welcoming, of contemplation, of prayer

A place where not only Daughters of Jesus are welcomed, but where various groups of the sector or the diocese come for meetings; a place of meditation and prayer for those who come to pray Saint Joseph whether at the oratory or the chapel. Every Wednesday our communities pray for all the intentions entrusted to Saint Joseph. The near-by cemetery reminds us that our life is a passage here below and that we are in communion with all those gone before us.

Kermaria: a workplace

There I met employees happy to exercise their profession among the sisters at Kermaria. We get to know one another and to mutually appreciate each other. I witnessed their attentiveness to each one and I personally benefited from their services.

Thanks to the gardeners who upkeep the premises it is such a joy, such a relaxation to stroll among the colorful flowerbeds which vary with the seasons.

I really wanted to spend this time within a family context, my religious family, happy to get better acquainted with the Sisters. One of the Orientations of the 2016 General Chapter invites us to ‘‘take care of our common home’’. My gratitude to all those who look after our elderly sisters at our mother home (Saint Joseph’s and Sainte Famille) and we know they are not in their prime!

In our various mission fields, the God who loves us so gratuitously invites each of us to be a daily witness to his tender loving care, his charity. Thank you, dear sisters, for your support through prayer which gives strength to our faith and missionary presence, wherever we are sent.

Denise Toublant, fj


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