2021-05-25 BELGIUM

Being Marist N.10 June 2021

WEST CENTRAL EUROPE

Here you can read the recent edition of Being Marist N.10 June 2021

Dear Marist Friends,
At this time, around 6 June, we pause to reflect on the life of Marcellin Champagnat.
In our communities, in our Province and worldwide. This is the second time we have celebrated this day during the pandemic, a time of particular challenges and experiences.
Vulnerability is palpable and endurance is required of us. There are also many signs of hope and connection: people are looking out for each other, helping
each other where previously this was not necessary and are creative to find new ways to connect. We are becoming aware of what really matters.
In this issue of Being Marist, Marcellin is at the centre. It reminds me of the story of Moses meeting God: Moses sees a burning bush, and wonders how it can’t
burn. After God calls Moses, He says, «Don’t come any closer and take off your shoes, because the ground where you are standing is holy ground». Holy ground,
that’s where you take off your shoes. A sign of respect and real contact. This is how I understand humility: with bare feet you are really on the ground, there is nothing in between. I am not bigger or smaller than I am. How could La Valla and the  Hermitage have become holy ground for Marcellin? Special things must have happened in these places.
Where is our holy ground? For me, the experience of holy ground can be there when we meet. In a real encounter, «barefoot», without pretensions or intentions. This experience is always there when I meet Marists, anywhere in our province or in the world, and it is not easy to pinpoint exactly what causes it. But it is there: the feeling of being at home together.
L’Hermitage is also such a place for me, where we can see and feel that we are connected: with our common history and with each other in the here and now. It is
a place of silence, where the Spirit is at work, as we celebrate at Pentecost. In the stories and experiences that you read on the following pages, you are invited to
holy ground. Beautiful and inspiring stories that make us stand amazed and invite us to take off our shoes.
May the reading invite you to your own holy ground. Many thanks on behalf of the Mission Council for the inspiring contributions in this Being Marist and especially to Aisling for her work in making this newsletter possible.
I wish us beautiful encounters around 6 June, in connection and with joy. May the Spirit lead us.

Conny Stuart, The Netherlands

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