There is a reason for everything; nothing is a matter of fate!

After two years of sabbatical and formation in Quebec, Canada, Sr Chrésence Beyala shares with us this beautiful experience of life outside of her province of Africa.

 

 

Two years of “renewal” in Canada

 

At the end of my two years’ formation in Quebec, Canada, I wish to express my gratitude to our former General and Provincial Councils for giving me the opportunity to study abroad.

During the six previous years, I had worked in Congo Kinshasa where I endeavored to live out the charism of the Daughters of Jesus by serving the poor and lowly. Feeling tired and even worn-out, I asked for a time of rest and renewal. I was fortunate to come to Quebec, Canada to recuperate.

These two years have provided me the opportunity to do a serious re-reading of my life and moments of hardships. My first year at the Intercommunity Centre Four Seasons, Sherbrooke, Qc, ( http://ci4saisons.com/)the chance to meet therapists, spiritual directors, to interact in group therapies as well as different courses led me to explore my relationship to my own being, to others and to God. One must admit that soul searching is not always easy, but I was determined to see more clearly what was going on in my own life; I discovered the signs of God’s presence. I am grateful to the Centre, to their outstanding personnel who have helped me get back on my feet and grow in all aspects of my being.

A year to strengthen my Christian faith


Following this first year of renewal, I felt the need for a second year of formation in order to be strengthened in my faith-life. Thus I followed courses leading to a certificate in faith education at the Dominican Pastoral Institute in Montreal. This formation helped me to understand better how God reveals himself in our awareness, in the events of our history and in that of the Church. It was also stressed how important our free adhesion is in this revelation.

 

At the end of these years of study, I understand better the passage of St Paul :

 

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer nature is wasting away,

our inner nature is being renewed every day”. (2 Cor 4, 16).

 

I became aware how much my exterior being was vulnerable and fragile and how I had to take greater care of my inner being, the soul which enables me to be in communication with God, the spirit which gives me life. Exterior activities had become all important in my life to the point that there was no time given to the care of my inner being. And thus, everything was falling into ruins. Yes, it was time for me to sit back and refocus my life.

I became aware how much my exterior being was vulnerable and fragile and how I had to take greater care of my inner being, the soul which enables me to be in communication with God, the spirit which gives me life. Exterior activities had become all important in my life to the point that there was no time given to the care of my inner being. And thus, everything was falling into ruins. Yes, it was time for me to sit back and refocus my life.

 

A taste of the life of the Daughters of Jesus in Canda

 

These two years have also allowed me to know our Sisters of the different vice-provinces of Canada: Three Rivers, Rimouski, Moncton as well as the history of the Daughters of Jesus in this country. I was delighted to witness how they live out the charism in their different realities, individually and in community. My gratitude to each of the Sisters who have enabled me to have a taste of Canadian DJ community life.

 

Moreover, I had the opportunity to discover Nova Scotia, Cape Breton and more precisely on Isle Madame, the parish of Arichat where our first French sisters arrived on December 24th, 1902, a Christmas gift to the Acadian population. It was very impressive to come to this place which I had read about in the history books of our Congregation. I have now been in contact with its reality, I have now seen with my own eyes.

 

In conclusion, a verse from Ps 116 comes to mind :

 

“What shall I render to the Lord for all his bounty to me?”

 

Like the psalmist, I feel so filled with love for God and I am so filled with gratitude that I would like to do everything for him.

 

Sr. Chrescence BEYALA, FJ

Cameroon, province Africa

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