Annual Day of Reflection for the South Eastern Region
Report by David Blackwell, Hospitaller for the South Eastern Region
The Annual Day of Reflection for the South Eastern Region was held on Saturday 29 February at the Carmelite Monastery in Kew. The Principal Chaplain of the Sub-Priory of the Immaculate Conception, Fr Gerald O’Collins SJ AC lead the Reflection. Fr Gerald asked us to reflect on the Eucharist as ‘memory – both individually and collective’, ‘body – bodily presence to each other, the sign of the cross’, ‘identity – the common answer to our quest for meaning’, and ‘expectation – the Eucharist defines our expectations for the future’. He also asked us to reflect on three prayers of: repentance, intercession and thanksgiving. Fr Gerald finished by asking us to leave the retreat as yachts, not rowboats and to make a resolution for Lent to read prayerfully one of the Gospels – for instance John. ‘Abide in me as I abide in you’ (John 15:4).
The day was also the last day of the Sub-Priory retreat where 12 members in preparation (5 day retreat) and 15 members (3 day retreat) joined in unity with 35 members of the South Eastern Region. The day of Reflection was spiritually enriching, building cohesion and friendship between members. The Carmelite Sisters made the day extra special by their hospitality in sharing their home and nourishing us and joining us at Mass, where we were honoured to witness ‘The Rite of Obedience’ in which Confrere Colin Yap from the Singapore Association and Confrere Frank Testa from Central Eastern Region took the Promise of Obedience. The Promise was received by Confrere Professor David Kissane AC Procurator of the Sub-Priory of the Immaculate Conception.