Women with a heart for the world
RNDM Spirituality is based on the Trinity and Mary
Euphrasie Barbier received a particular gift to understand that the Trinity is the source of all missionary activity.
Regarding the expression Divine Missions, we who are nothing have in mind not our own poor missions but solely the Mission of the Incarnate word who was sent by God His Father to redeem the human race and the Divine Mission of the Holy Spirit sent by the Father and the Son to sanctify the Church. This is the reason for the existence of the Institute and for its special character.
The theology which underpins Euphrasie’s charism is very evident in the title she chose for her Congregation: Our Lady of the Missions. She wrote in her first Constitutions on 14th January, 1870:
To the ordinary person this title means that we devote ourselves primarily to the foreign missions, under the protection of Our Lady. But for us it has a much deeper meaning. Mission means sending. Angel means sent, so does Apostle. Yet, God is the only one sent. The Father sent the son, the son sends the Holy Spirit, but these three persons are inseparable, and work in unison for the sanctification of souls.
The spirituality that was central to Euphrasie’s charism was given practical and special focus in the example of Mary. In her life story is found that complete “self gift”to the Trinity on which the Congregation was modelled. Mary listens and ponders in her heart. She contemplates the Divine Missions and sets herself to be totally available to God’s will.
Filled with joy she goes out to others to celebrate the love she has experienced, the purpose with which she has been entrusted. Thus, the Visitation of Mary to her cousin Elizabeth as recorded in St Luke’s gospel is a special feast celebrated by RNDM’s. But the major patronal feast named by Euphrasie is Pentecost.
The missionary activity of RNDM Sisters today reaches out to the marginalised and most disadvantaged in our world.
Though the needs and conditions of society have changed and continue to change over the years the abiding missionary spirit of the Congregation remains alive and well.