Could the RULE of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul be rewritten just from observing your Conference? This is a question posed in the Handbook for Spiritual Advisors and a good question to ponder.
This is even a good question to ask your Conference members. Pose the question and invite members to reflect a few moments on what in their life as an SVDP member might be evident and could be included in a Rule written for their Conference. It may be the area of Spirituality, Friendship or Service and how that is seen or experienced. Even in a Zoom meeting, as most are still doing, this could be done and shared aloud by each person.
In our International Rule, Section 2, Vincentian Spirituality and Vocation, there is an important section describing in broad terms that we “journey together towards holiness.” How does that look in your Conference? Be specific in your responses.
The President of every Conference has a responsibility for promoting Vincentian spirituality and works closely with the person(s) appointed as Spiritual Advisor. It is even better if a Conference can have two persons share the role of Spiritual Advisor or Spiritual “Facilitator.” The Spiritual Advisor is dedicated to inspiring, guiding and helping the members in living their Vincentian vocation.
The Opening Prayer followed by a Spiritual Reflection period of 10-20 minutes is an expectation for each Conference meeting. The Reflection strives to engage the imagination and intellect of Vincentians in ways that deepen personal and communal meditation and response. Responses and thoughts that are shared with our members help us to know one’s another’s hearts and grow in friendship, as well as spiritually.
Many tools and resources are available to aid the Spiritual Advisor: The Handbook for Spiritual Advisors, the Serving in Hope Modules, the Sunday Liturgy Reflection Sheets. All of these are available on the www.svdpusa.org website in the Resource Section and Tools for Members.
When we can meet again in person, there will be some training or formation workshops for Spiritual Advisors, new and experienced. Meanwhile, a current resource is offered on Wednesday evenings of Lent at 7:00 pm. These sessions are based on Module II, Serving in Hope: Our Vincentian Spirituality. You should be receiving the email invitations from the central office to Register and obtain the link to connect on Zoom.
With you on the journey,
Sister Noreen Ellison, SC