Saturday, June 2, 2012

wuv, twu wuv

It’s hard to believe my year at the CDN is about over. I still remember when I was blessed and sent on my way from Sinsinawa and arrived at this large house that would be called home on August 18. It’s also hard to believe that this is my last blog post on “A Day in the Life”. After each of us say our farewell to our blog followers the blog will sleep for the summer and hopefully be picked up again in the fall by a new set of Novices.

In our first newsletter, I wrote that I was looking forward to blessings and fun times and that I was ready for the year. Remembering the naiveté of that statement nine months later makes me smile. This year was certainly filled with blessings and fun times, but it has also had struggles and confusion. I am beginning to understand what my sisters were trying to tell me when they said that novitiate is a blessed year unlike any other, but that it is also tough.

I loved getting to know sisters and friars from the wider Dominican Family. Sharing prayer, meals, class and ministry helped me understand that we are a family and that we need each other. I also appreciate being in class with men and women Novices from other Religious Orders. These sessions provided peers whom I could bounce ideas off of and share my journey. I am amazed at the quality of speakers we were able to bring in through the Inter-Community Novitiate Program including Ron Rolheiser and Tony Gittins.

I also appreciate the rougher times during the year; the hard questions posed, the growth encouraged and the stretching required. It has been a huge blessing to be companioned and directed by two women who love religious life so much that they want to help me discern if it is right for me as well. The care they showed and the time they took to sit with me as I learned the skills needed to live in community and wrestled with questions that are bigger than any one of us was such a gift. Of course, the year wouldn’t have been the same without my fellow novices. These two women were a witness of the blessings of living in community. The concern and love shown when a member of community was grieving the loss of a dear friend, or when one was physically not 100% was matched only by our  laughter as we told stories of our day, reminisced about plans thrown out the window and quoted favorite lines from movies.

The support provided me during this Canonical year in St. Louis will stay with me long after I leave the city. Through notes, e-mails, care packages, comments on the blog and encouragement spoken as sisters traveled through our house, I knew I was part of a larger community that all wanted to help me discover if living the Dominican Life is where I can be my most authentic self.

To quote one of our favorite lines at the CDN this year I felt the “wuv, twu wuv” from every direction.

—Sr. Krissie Koll, Dominican Novice based in Sinsinawa, WI

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