ABOUT US Marie Balavenne Year March 2016 August 2017
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Easter 2016 was a time of remembrance in Ireland, especially in Dublin. We celebrated the birth of a nation, a hundred years of growth since the country became a republic. It was in this context that the Daughters of the Holy Spirit, together with the Associates, some parishoners and friends, gathered at the Raheny DHS Community on 13 April to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the birth of their foundress, Marie Balavenne.
We reflected how in Brittany the parents of this child must have held her in their arms and wondered what she might one day become. Here we were in Dublin, 350 years later, celebrating what she did become: a woman led by the Spirit and on fire with love of God and neighbour,
We were privileged to have as celebrant for the Eucharist a Spiritan priest who was home from Ethiopia. The readings, the hymns and prayers in English and Gaelic, helped us to express our thanksgiving to the Lord for the life of Marie Balavenne. During the homily, Fr. Moran shared with us a story which gave meaning to this event. "An elderly Carthusian monk met a stranger on the road and the stranger, pointing to the monastery on the hill, asked, "What do you do up there?" “Up there,” answered the monk "we keep the fire burning". This could sum up the life and mission of the Daughters of the Holy Spirit over the past three centuries, keeping that fire of love for the poor and most vulnerable alight in our suffering world, a fire which Marie Balavenne kindled so many years ago."
The afternoon concluded with refreshments and a trip down memory lane, an opportunity to remember with gratitude what the Spirit is doing in our world.
Veronica Hanrahan DHS, EIW Province. Email - Published on 25/04/2016