On Tuesday the 2nd February 2016, our new Bishop, Laurent Camiade, met for the first time with the Pastoral Animation Group of the Latronquière parish grouping (France), made up of 8 rural communities. He discovered the reality of Church life in each of them.
We first welcomed him as a community for the midday meal, in the course of which we addressed many questions!
Each one was able to talk about the reality of his or her own life and responsibilities: joys, difficulties, questions. As the meeting progressed a “geographic plan” allowed him to situate them (proximity, remoteness) and so make what they said even more tangible.
The amazement of our Bishop was visible in the face of this life shared in fraternity. He was also able to discover the richness of the prayer book put together by the local heritage group for the Way of the Cross in the church which is about to be officially classed as a historic monument of France.
Our meeting was enlarged in the church where a good number of parishioners awaited us for the celebration of the Mass of the Presentation of the Lord on the last day of the year of Consecrated Life. Our Bishop invited us to “Give thanks for the gift which God makes to his Church through the call of people to give all of their life to living in intimacy with Jesus Christ and to the service of his Church through prayer and action…
Here, in Latronquière, my predecessor confided the coordination of the parish to the religious community…
In a society where a culture of indifference and solitude is developing, the mission of presence, of listening and accompanying is a precious gift received from the sisters, especially in the countryside …
I see many different needs in our diocese to which the apostolic sisters could respond : solitude, isolation, confinement, the emotional distress of women, religious ignorance, violence … Let us pray to God with confidence!”
Finally, as planned, we were happy to gather together for a fraternal sharing of the traditional Candelmas crêpes.
Soeur Mie Josèphe Tirbois