The September 2022 Meeting of the SNJM Associates

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A group of approximately 26 associates enjoyed a joyful, energetic, in-person coming together on September 14, 2022 in the St. Mary’s Academy library. It had been a while!

The meeting was opened by Sister Marylyn with a beautiful land acknowledgement followed by a short recap of recent happenings, a lovely placing of candles in memory of associates and loved ones of associates who had passed away recently, an introduction to the new associates and current candidates, and an update regarding Manitoba’s new SNJM Leadership Team.

Connie Yunyk then presented a brief overview of the 3-day SNJM Charrette that took place in Chicago in June. (A charrette could be defined as a collaborative session that strives to arrive at a new design via planning and finding solutions.)

This charrette was attended by representatives from every SNJM province. Connie was among those who represented Manitoba.

Through liturgy, prayer and conversation, the group of delegates agreed that its goal, going forward, was for ALL of the SNJM community to come together and present a more unified overall focus and message while also acknowledging the differences that exist within the community.

Following Connie’s presentation, we learned about how the year would unfold: Speaking on behalf of Spirituality, Chris Butterill informed us that in addition to the Mother Marie Rose celebration being held at the Despins Residence on October 6th, there will be a Saturday morning retreat in November, an evening of reflection at some point in the new year, and a closing Mass in May. Speaking on behalf of Communications, Jean Van Walleghem explained that they are involved with such things as providing information to associates, keeping in touch with those who are not able to attend meetings regularly or who are not well, sending cards, asking members to assist with various meeting tasks, etc. Speaking on behalf of the Outreach, Pat Bozyk read a report from Mary Morton informing us about our continued involvement in providing a Christmas dinner at the Immaculate Conception Sunday Drop In, and about another yet-to-be decided outreach event that will take place in the early spring. Lastly, Gina Hoe, speaking on behalf of the Education, said that it was their hope to organize a presentation that focused on healing.

At this point, and in connection with the subject of education, Michelle St. Croix introduced and directed the activity of dividing into “mobile” groups to discuss 4 major questions: a) High points experienced in recent years; b) Low points experienced in recent years; c) How we coped; and d) What we thought was beneficial to the well-being of ourselves and others.

Following this time of meaningful discussion and sharing, the evening ended appropriately with everyone singing the lovely Beatles’ song “With a Little Help from My Friends”.

Written by Deanne McDonald

Featured Picture: Joy Lussier, Marnie Puchniak and Michelle St. Croix