It cannot be that the son of these tears should perish
(Augustine, Confessions 3.21, quoting a bishop’s words to his mother, Monika)
The last couple of months have been even busier than usual - so apologies for not getting a web news out sooner! For the Community, the biggest event was the visit of the Prioresses of the Federation, along with the Mother General, Sr Marie Claude, in early September.
They came from France and Africa, as well as Liverpool, and several had never visited Boarbank before. They appreciated the warm welcome, and we hope they will be back! They then went on to Park House in Liverpool for the Prioresses' Assembly and from there spent the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross at Ince.
Sr Marian came from Park House for a few days' holiday and several Sisters have had and continue to have holidays in order to rest and be refreshed.
In early September, Sr Margaret went to Cambridge to give a pre-postulancy retreat to the Dominicans, attended by both friars and sisters, including seven English and Dutch novices and postulants.
In October, Sr Elizabeth and Sr Ildikó went to the annual conference of the Association of Provincial Bursars.
It was very good to have Bishop Michael with us as chief celebrant to celebrate the Feast of St Augustine on 28th August. He and other guests joined us for a meal afterwards.
On 17th October, we were joined by the Vicar for Religious, Mgr Slattery, and others religious Sisters from communities in Cumbria, for a Day for Religious.
This was led by Canon Luiz Ruscillo, who provided two wonderfully stimulating sessions of Lectio Divina, using the story of the healing of the blind man in Jericho (comparing the three synoptic accounts) and Mary Magdalene's encounter with the risen Jesus in the Gospel of John.
We have had a full house for much of the summer, which we have much enjoyed. Our regular families week at the end of July was, as always, a particular pleasure for us.
The long-awaited refurbishment of the Drawing Room is now UNDER WAY! The electrics are being renewed, curtains have been chosen, the repainting starts next week. If all goes well, the bulk will be finished before Christmas.
Of course this is a very expensive project - we would be very grateful for any donations or support with fundraising for it. We hope it will give all our guests and visitors a beautiful space to enjoy for several decades!
Thinking Faith week, for Catholics in their 20s-40s, in the first week in August, was on the theme of Catholic Social Teaching. [CLICK] for more.
For Thinking Scripture we had a full house to study St Matthew's gospel. [CLICK] for more.
Freedom and Hope, for those who who are involved with prisoners and their families, took as its theme 'Repentance and Forgiveness'. The dedication of our prison chaplains and volunteers is always very impressive for us. They in their turn greatly appreciated the chance to share prayer, fellowship and ideas.
We were all impressed by a visit to our local Cenacolo community - always a powerful experience - and by Stephen Hawkins presentation of the Sycamore Tree project for restorative justice in prisons. [CLICK] for more.
Early September is often a time for school INSET visits, and this year we welcomed two old sets of friends, Maria Hall and the staff from St Patrick's Primary School, Walton-le-Dale, then Bernie Barnes and the staff of Sacred Heart Primary School in Barrow. St Patrick's led us for Evening Prayer - thank you for the lovely singing! - and the Sacred Heart staff worked together with Sr Margaret on revising their mission statement.
Marymount Nursing Home
The full programme of events have included recently a magic show from Mr Fitchett, a slide show on Ireland, singing with Dale and with Michael, flower arranging, the film of Oklahoma! and several trips out in the minibus.
Congratulations to Beata and Michal on their wedding, which took place in Poland. We are looking forward to seeing the official photographs and DVD.
It is always sad to say goodbye to our long-standing staff - but we wish Christine and Aga all the very best in their new lives.
They go with our gratitude and our prayers.
We also said 'au revoir', 'adiós' and 'viszontlátásra' to Thomas, Elena and Zsófia, who gave us so much by their presence this summer.
Our international dimension has been renewed, though, with the arrival of Mirela and Oana from Romania, who will work as nurses in Marymount. 'Bine ati venit în Boarbank!'
We have received a few lovely entries for the PHOTO COMPETITION - but please increase the competition by sending in your own!
We held our Macmillan Coffee Morning recently and are very grateful to everyone who supported it as we raised £120 - thank you.
And finally .... a sermon from Fr Dixie [CLICK] (Fr Peter has just gone on holiday, so I've missed one from him)
Two of our residents from local families, Will Phizacklea and Erwin Zerkel, have died in Marymount recently. We offer our sympathy to their families and friends. May they rest in peace.