Newfoundland & Labrador Congregational Gathering

We continue to share in the dream of Nano to:
Live Contemplatively
Walk Lightly on Earth
Witness Prophetically

Our planning for our NL Canada Provincial Gathering 2020 has known many transformative changes with COVID-19’s impact and is now taking place on October 20 and 21. Song and processional dance with symbols rich in meaning in our opening ritual will mark the formal Declaration of the Opening of Provincial Gathering 2020 the evening of the October 20. The next day flows into our provincial leadership election, acceptance of our leadership team report and revised statutes, and our closing ritual as we transition to our incoming leadership team, new paths unfolding.   

On the 21st as we gather, we pray to rekindle the spirit of our first four pioneering women from Galway and the numerous others who followed as we celebrate the 187th anniversary of the opening of our first school here in St. John’s on October 21, 1833.  We remember … we celebrate … we give thanks. We invite you to pray with us that their spirit may ever burn anew deep within and light the way into our emerging future, deeply rooted in mission, and like Nano, daring to be led by our God, ever loving, wise, and faithful.

Refrain only: Steadfast Love  by Miriam K. Martin, pbvm
The steadfast love of our God never ceases.
God’s mercies never come to an end.
They are new every morning, they remain throughout the night.
Great is God’s faithfulness.

In the spirit of “widening our tents” and embracing our Congregation’s call to live more interculturally, we have again chosen to have three of our NL provincial leadership team elected by our local unit and two appointed from outside our unit by our congregational leadership team in Ireland.  One sister has already been appointed from Pakistan and one from Ireland.

As we move into our unit leadership election, we invite you be with us in spirit and in prayer as we lovingly hold one another, those present here and those holding vigil elsewhere, and most especially those women among us who have been called forth by us to discern elected leadership and whose discernment has led them to let their names stand.

In prayerful support and reverent gratitude for our out-going team, our in-coming team, and for each other moving forward, we call to mind Our Way of Life:

The ministry of leadership enables each sister to use her gifts
appropriately and fruitfully for building up the Body of Christ. C44
We value the ministry of designated leadership
that seeks to inspire us so that the gifts and resources of all
can be life-giving for mission. C45
(Repeat song refrain – Steadfast Love ) Blessing these women and one another, our global Presentation People, and those whom we serve and minister among, we listen to our reading …

Blessed Are You Who Bear the Light
Blessed are you who bear the light
in unbearable times,
who testify to its endurance
amid the unendurable,
who bear witness to its persistence
when everything seems in shadow and grief.

Blessed are you
in whom the light lives,
in whom the brightness blazes –
your heart
a chapel,
an altar
where in the deepest night
can be seen the fire
that shines forth in you
in unaccountable faith,
in stubborn hope,
in love that illumines
every broken thing it finds.

© Jan Richardson from “Circle of Grace: A Book of Blessings for the Seasons”  

Closing:  (Repeat Song Refrain – Steadfast Love )
The steadfast love of our God never ceases.
God’s mercies never come to an end.
They are new every morning, they remain throughout the night.
Great is God’s faithfulness.