A new insertion among older people in Azalea gardens, Pietermaritzburg (South Africa)
Just being here is already a Ministry of PRESENCE, a new experience, not only for us as Sisters, but also for those in our Complex. We moved in here to Azalea Gardens on 23 July 2018. The Azaleas were in full bloom to welcome us! And we have been welcomed by our Administrator and Residents alike.
Why have we come here some were asking? As Sisters here, we are beginning to be seen as people amongst people who share this stage of life! The place, presence and purpose of Religious Sisters in society is expanding for all – as one old gentleman said, “I don't like Nuns, but even so YOU are welcome”.
There are 58 Cottages in the Complex, each with a small garden in front. By chance, we have a little garden space at the back of our cottage too. With the help of our neighbours, we have planted a few different kinds of flowers in the front; and at the back some vegetables: lettuce, carrots, spinach, onions, leaks, tomatoes, peas. The Complex has a lovely Frail Care Unit – open to people from the cottages in time of need, and to people from outside the Complex too. All the Staff here are very caring and special people – so friendly too.
With regard to Ministry, Isobel has started visiting a few of the Cottages, and the Frail Care Unit. Jen continues to offer Spiritual Direction and Prayer Accompaniment and hopes eventually to be able to extend and strengthen faith in the Spirit Alive and Present and at work in ALL CREATION. It is early days yet in the development of possible ministry. Now is a special time of settling in, listening for, and feeling the tugs of our God with regard to Ministry. One thing is certain: COMMUNION IS ALIVE AND SEEN in a special way here. Relevant Ministry is already evolving.
Sent in by Isobel and Jen