A little boy once came across a sparrow laying on his back with his feet sticking up to the sky. The boy looked at him and asked "Sparrow, why are you lying on his back on your back with your feet pointing up to the sky?" The sparrow replied, because if the sky falls, I will use my feet to prevent it from falling on us." The boy replied "But you're just one little bird, and the sky is so giant!" The sparrow responded: "I know, but I'm just doing my part."
I'm paraphrasing this story -- one that was told to Archbishop Charles Chaput, of Denver, when he was at a conference on Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha. The Archbishop shared this story today during his homily at the profession Mass of the Sisters of Life, at the beautiful Basilica of St. John the Evangelist
in Stamford, Connecticut.
Salt + Light was on hand to film the first vows of 10 novices, and the perpetual vows of one sister -- a native of Vancouver, Sister Antoniana Maria of the Trinity.
The point that Archbishop Chaput was making is that the Sisters making their profession are "doing their part." It may seem insignificant at times, it may not seem very glorious, but in each act they do, they live out their vows more fully; they bring Christ to others; they help build the culture of life.
And this is the mission of the Sisters -- to build a culture of life; to show the beauty and dignity of life. This is part of their charism of life.
In fact, the Sisters
take a fourth vow at their profession: to protect and enhance the sacredness of life.
The founder of the Sisters, the Archbishop of New York, Cardinal John O'Connor, who passed away ten years ago, wrote:
It is my vision that the Culture of Death will be converted into a Culture of Life – not simply the life of the unborn infant, not simply the life threatened by euthanasia or physician-assisted suicide, but the spiritual life of those created in the image and likeness of God. Ultimately, the salvation of the soul is infinitely more important than the salvation of the body. To bring about the conversion of souls, conversion of hearts – this is surely the charism, the apostolate of the Sisters of Life. (Vision Conference, July 31, 1998)
The work the Sisters of Life do is vitally important, and inspiring. Salt + Light Television will be capturing their charism of life
in a documentary, that you can watch for in the Spring of 2011.
For more on the Sisters of Life, visit their website HERE