Items filtered by date: May 2020
Today, June 5, 2020, I want to pay homage to Eileen McBrearty on the 10th anniversary of her death.
She leaves her mark colored by her heritage, Irish on her father’s side and Scotch on her mother’s side. She enjoyed pushing us to the wall, provoking a reaction and exasperating us.
Her sense of responsibility made her demanding of others but she was easily forgiven because of her kind heart, her joie de vivre and her generosity.
People still speak to me about the attachment, friendship and affection they had for her.
Some time after her death a stranger stopped me in front of a store and said, “Madame, I want to offer you my condolences for the death of Madame McBrearty. I would see you together in church and I was struck by her smile. She was a good person.” For me, that comment was evidence that what we radiate influences our world.
To this day friends remember what she represented for them; they remember her tastes in food: French fries, hamburger, seafood, chicken with a good glass of wine. “Why not!” was her response when she was offered a glass of wine.
I believe it was her transparency that called us to love her as she was. A few months ago I met a priest who had worked on a committee with her. He said, “Ah, Eileen, I quite liked her; she knew what she wanted and would push things forward. She had a clear objective, to bring a project to fruition even if it meant upsetting some people.”
Rest in peace, dear Eileen. Thank you for having been part of our life, jarring us out of our routine to see with new eyes and step out of ourselves. Thank you for your love of life and for having left us your “I love.” that still resonates with us.
I am a retired nurse. For a number of years my volunteer commitment has focused on being a greeter at a community centre for active seniors.
As well, I assist an outreach worker involved with tenants in a low-rental building.
Once a month I do a shift at a listening help centre.
Within the Institute, occasionally visit a companion who is unwell or who is experiencing loss of independence.
My spiritual life is important in my striving to live my mission well. My five apostolic attitudes are my point of reference.
I refer to Jesus in my daily life to model his example in my relationships.
What is essential to me in relating to others is compassion, openness, listening and recognizing each one’s importance.
I am guided and assisted by Love.
When I was four I very innocently said in front of my family that I was going to become a nun. They all burst out laughing. That was it – no more sharing of secrets!
Twenty years later, during his visits to schools, the bishop of Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, came to my class and spoke to me about the Oblates who don’t criticize, don’t complain, are consecrated but are not nuns and don’t wear a habit.
That was it – exactly what I had hoped for.
I started my probation six months after entering the Institute and have never looked back; I have never doubted that I am exactly where I belong.
When I decided to join the Institute the attraction for me was the simplicity and the commitment that it offered: consecrating my life to God while remaining lay and committing to living the charity of Christ to transform my milieu through positive attitudes. One attitude in particular, the absence of criticism, always helped me to see the good and the beauty in every person and in the world.