By Jonathan Tindor
Whether it is having a conversation with an old friend, or fighting human trafficking, the sisters of the Deaconess Community are indeed impacting a broken world.
The 2017 Deaconess Assembly, “Called to Impact a Broken World,” was held at Loyola University’s Lake Shore Campus, June 26 – 28. For me, it was a busy time. I found little time to stop and think about the assembly or what it meant. Upon reflection, I find that I am impressed with the members of this community. From arrival, through the plenary sessions, to the group photo, and through departure, the sisters showed a spirit of graciousness, selflessness, and service.
The Assembly was purposefully shorter than it had been in the past. This was to allow some of the sisters to remain for World DIAKONIA. In the short time the Community spent together, the sisters did a lot. A few of the things they accomplished were:
- Welcoming a sister, Sr. Le Brandes, to the Community.
- Welcoming Sr. Florence Gatege and Sr. Genester Nyakayango from the Tumushubire Deaconess Community of Karagwe, Tanzania.
- Helping to combat human trafficking by putting together S.O.A.P materials.
- Helping to create welcome bags for diaconal leaders from all over the world.
- Voting on restructuring some of the Community’s organization.
- Worshiping, breaking bread, and laughing together.
The amount of work that the sisters did was impressive. But what made it inspiring was the way they worked. It was with grace, humor, and love.