Sisters, in the few short weeks since we launched our new community; we’ve been joined by 96 subscribers and more than 20 dioceses, in at least 12 states! Your enthusiastic responses make it crystal clear that we want to connect and communicate with each other on our journey as Catholic women and deacons’ and deacon-candidate’s wives. Keep spreading the word to other wives so they can join us!
Communication creates change
Pope Francis speaks about communication often, recently in releasing his message for World Communications Day 2018, which falls on May 13, the Sunday before Pentecost, “What we say and how we say it, our every word and gesture, ought to express God’s compassion, tenderness and forgiveness for all.”
Last year I read ‘The Four Agreements – A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom’ by Don Miguel Ruiz, a book which has appeared on the NY Times bestseller list for over 10 years. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, the first agreement is to ‘be impeccable with your word’, and to use the power of your word for ‘truth and love.’
These inspirations have caused me to reflect on my own practices, and frankly, I realized I can do better. Achieving the ‘impeccable’ may be impossible, but I CAN resist daily pressures which draw me toward negativity (at work, at home, at church). I CAN help to re-direct conversations toward positive actions and outcomes, toward understanding and forgiveness.
Where can we shape more loving language practices?
“How beautiful it is when people select their words and actions with care, in the effort to avoid misunderstandings, to heal wounded memories and to build peace and harmony,” says Pope Francis.
Right here, we have a powerful new community of women who can do much to build peace and harmony. As parish leaders and deacons’ wives, just think of all the settings where WE can influence the language.
In reflecting on my own habits, I’m starting with these changes:
- Not engage in gossip, even that which seems ‘harmless’
- Proclaim more readily to those in our church or in the outside community, about the joys of my faith and ministry
- Express appreciation and praise frequently to those who serve (the parish staff, clergy, altar server, lector, volunteer…)
- Make positive suggestions and invite quieter members to speak up, in committee and ministry meetings
Let us hear from YOU. What are your insights on how we can respond to Pope Francis’ call to action?
- How can we sow harmony and hope?
- How can our words lead to positive actions?
- When we see things going in the wrong direction, how can we right them?
- What are we failing to do enough of?
- What do YOU do that works?