The U.S. Province had its winter assembly at the house of our community in Lansdale during the weekend of January 9-11, 2009.
In the Friday afternoon meeting, Sisters Chabela and Nuala offered an in-depth look at the eco-theological work of Fr. Christo Rey Garcia Paredes, cmf. (He had given two conferences at the congregation's Formators' session held in July 2008 at the Motherhouse in Paris.)
There was the threat of snow for Saturday, but God (or the weatherman) seems to have relented: a few flurries and a cold wind were not enough to keep hardy lay Friends of the Assumption from arriving for a lively gathering on Saturday afternoon. Mark Supple of West Philadelphia kicked things off with an account of how things have evolved in Philadelphia since the canonization; he spoke movingly, as did his fellow West Philadelphians, about the experience of taking on the cross of the Assumption. After the group presentation, the Friends split into mixed groups from all the communities while the Sisters met separately. The conversation was on whether the experience of West Philadelphia could be translated into something useful for the other localities. Consensus was that it would take time and effort, but that it was something desirable and do-able, always keeping in mind the particular needs of the people of a particular place.
After all the work was done, Vespers helped us to bring it all together in prayer. Finally, a wonderful time of table fellowship or rather, plates on the lap fellowship, since there was no other way to accommodate the 60+ of us gathered together. As we said goodbye, we left each other with the belief that something new is building in the Assumption USA what it will exactly look like, we dont know. But that it is in process seemed undeniable to us all.