[Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si’ urges us to cultivate “hearts…authentically open to universal communion.” (#92) In response to this call in light of our charism of Charity, Sr. Claire E. Regan offered these thoughts on a snowy December morning.]

In her recent Charism Corner reflection, Sr. Regina Bechtle asked, “How am I being stretched this Advent to know God in a new way, to seek to see how God reveals Godself in and through Creation in the spirit of Laudato Si’?”

This morning I mumbled, murmured, and possibly wished ill of the snow removal equipment which went lumbering past Ely Hall, here at Mount Saint Vincent at 4:30 AM. With half an eye open, I soon rolled over and fell back to sleep. When my eyes caught their first gaze upon the beautiful landscape covered with snow and the quiet stillness of the morning, all was transformed within me! I prayed for the birds and squirrels who hopefully were in their nests. I remembered the squirrel I saw feeding at the top of a garbage can just last week. At the time I hoped he had plenty of acorns in store in his wintry nest. Somehow I worried a bit about how we as humans have transformed HIS landscape and lifestyle with our waste disposal practices and excess foods aplenty on a campus rife with healthy, energetic young students and a smattering of eco-conscious women religious!

Today marked a turning of a new season: God at work in Creation, expressing new and particular invitations to “come and see “. Perhaps to take time to rest in the somber passing into a new chapter of God’s ever renewing story, a story that moves from quiet stillness onward to the flush of springtime and the green tones of spring. What was it that invigorated me this morning? That had me worried for the little creatures on our lawn?

I am in a “new” season of my personal journey at this time. A gift of this time is a heightened awareness of the nearness and beauty of God all around me. Yes, I have long seen God in the people around me, but to now “see,” through the lens of Laudato Si’, our interconnectedness with all that is, I have a renewing source of hope and energy within me. May the wonder with which I awoke this morning, echo in resounding praise to the Source of all life: “Laudato Si’.”

-Claire E. Regan, SC, 12/12/22