On the 23rd December 2017,
the Parish of Saint Thérèse in Quimper (France)
wanted to thank the Sisters
in the course of a Eucharistic celebration
for their many years of presence in the neighbourhood …
Word of welcome
Vice-Provincial of Quimper-Lorient
“The pupils of Saint Thérèse wrote the first pages of the history of the Daughters of Jesus in this neighbourhood, starting in 1962. As the boarding house wasn’t big enough to house all of the boarders, 15 of them lodged at number 55. No doubt, the oldest among you will still remember that.
Then, after the departure of the boarders, the two school chaplains lived there for some years.
It wasn’t until 1973 that the first six Daughters of Jesus arrived to form a community, linked to the Institute of Saint Thérèse, the Parish and the neighbourhood. There was also a community care nurse at this time.
The house had been closed for some months before the arrival of the new Sisters, one of whom was Sister Madeleine.
In June 1997, the Sister in charge at this time would go on to say to them, “Together you will live out, day to day, the charism of the Daughters of Jesus by being close to the people of the neighbourhood and the parish, through your simple presence … each one will find an insertion according to her possibilities” …
Little by little the community organised itself and each one found her bearings and insertions as she could.
Dear friends, you accompanied and encouraged them in their mission, you were willing to get involved alongside them and to take up the torch when the time came. Thank you each one of you for your collaboration, your solidarity and quite simply your friendship.
Thank you for having allowed them to live that “closeness and simple presence” in the neighbourhood. You have no doubt found at the community an open and welcoming house, an attentive ear and support. You were present in their prayer for “There is nothing that is really human that cannot find an echo in the hearts of the disciples of Christ.” (Gaudium et spes, Vatican 2).
This good neighbourliness was not a one-way relationship however. You looked out for “your” sisters and paid them many kindnesses. We find traces of it in their community journal. Thank you again. For each one of them, this support has been something precious. It is still there today as they prepare to leave the neighbourhood. I am sure you will know how to accompany them so that they can live this passage in serenity, peace and confidence.
It is also perhaps a time for each one, to gather in the heritage received from one and other, and to make it bear fruit in the months and years to come, each one in her own way, there where you are, there where you will be, my sisters.
Extracts from the homily of father Sébastien Guiziou, parish priest of Quimper
… “Love one another; as I have loved you … By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (Jn 13, 34 – 35). I think it is that that you, the sisters of the community of Kergoat ar lez, have wanted to live all these years. Your simple and discreet presence has been a great witness to fraternity and love of others. You have, in your manner, prepared the way of the Lord in the hearts of the people that you have met. You have sowed hope and joy, showing in this way that Jesus Christ is there for the whole world …
… As Christmas approaches, I invite you then to learn to look in your life, in your relationships at what is coming to birth, what is coming into bud. My sisters, during your presence here, you have enabled many things to come into bud in your different relationships and activities. That has been lifegiving and will continue to be in one way or another. And you will continue also to bring life there where you will be”.
After the celebration the meeting continued around a drinks reception.