LCWR engaged a process to help create the space for what is emerging in religious life to take root, develop, and grow — all in God’s time and with God’s grace. Our role is to be attentive to the promptings of the Spirit and responsive to the movements of newness of life. Following months of prayer, reflection, conversations, and discernment, the 2019 LCWR assembly participants committed to ongoing corporate discernment of the something new that God is creating within religious life. They voiced support for the LCWR emerging orientations as a way to create the space for whatever God is birthing anew to live, breathe, and be loved into existence.
It is in our ministry of elected leadership that we find the rhythm of the Paschal Mystery most profoundly and most intimately. We know that the horizon of these historical times draws nearer each day and we also know that our call to be faithful to the living of this vocation as consecrated women religious runs deep within and among us and our sisters. How to most faithfully respond to these times? How to navigate the rhythm of the Paschal Mystery as individual institutes and as a national conference? How to discern what is ours to do in the complexities of our country, world, and church? How to create the space for newness of life amid our daily realities? How to celebrate the gift of this vocation and sustain the vocations of those presently living this life and all those to come? And how to clearly name the narrative of religious life in these changing, challenging, and graced times?
Our corporate reflection on these questions led us to name several emergent orientations that we observe in LCWR. We see these orientations as guides for LCWR and its members to use as we journey into the future, together. They provide a framework in which we can pray, reflect, discern, act, plan, and choose as we embrace our time as holy, our leadership as gift and our challenges as blessing.
The document below is a reflection guide on the five orientations: global consciousness, more porous borders for LCWR, integrative partnerships, mission in the public square, and technologically astute.