ABOUT US Marie Balavenne Year March 2016 August 2017
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"Marie Balavenne" evening in Flers
Friday, June 2, 2017, at the invitation of Philippe Pottier, Priest of Flers -Normandie-, today Vicar General of the Orne Diocese, Sister Anne-Marie Foucher, Superior General of the Congregation of the Daughters of the Holy Spirit, came to present Mary Balavenne, founder of the Congregation.
Coming in friendship for the sisters of the communities of Briouze and Flers or to greet Sister Anne-Marie, a former student of the Notre Dame School, we had gathered in the chapel of the church of Saint Germain. Using a slideshow, Sister Anne-Marie gave a broad outline of the social, economic and religious context of the late 17th century when Marie Balavenne, Renée Burel and their companions began their small association. Skipping over three and a half centuries of existence of the Congregation, she recalled the celebration of the merger of the sisters of Notre Dame de Briouze and then that of the Sisters Hospitalieres of Poligny: placing the "Daughters of the Holy Spirit" today in ten countries around the world.
During the discussions that followed, some members of three communities spoke: Paulette and Danielle, from the community of Flers, spoke of their presence in the working class neighborhood; Monique, for her help to our Sisters in EHPAD and to all residents of the Sainte Agnès community; Aline, the services that the Community of Joncherets give to the parish, and Therese, with enthusiasm, evoked the work she had accomplished with young women in Cameroon.
Sister Anne Marie, thinking of the Associates, then evoked the beautiful face of Annick Riblier, who died last year in Flers. Then she also spoke about the secular laity in the world today. Three different ways of placing us, all living from the same spirituality inherited from the experience of Marie Balavenne and her companions, all attentive to the life of people, especially the most challenged ... drawing love from Trinitarian source and entrusting us to Mary.
A time of prayer has brought us together. We sent a warm thank you to Anne Marie. And our meeting ended around the glass of friendship.
Reactions on the way back from Briouze
"If we had lived at that time, as we like our profession as nurses, we would probably have been religious." (Expression of three young professionals, A. H. and P., with a touch of humor)
"I really enjoyed hearing the story of a congregation with the unforeseen events of life and the dynamism deployed throughout the ages! It was very good." A.M
Sister Aline Caer