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thought our brothers should know what's going on with their sisters. Please pray for us!

Devotedly,

Sister Mary Cecilia

May the holy triune God live in our hearts!

Bad Driburg
Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord
March 26, 2007

Dear Sisters,

ere is a piece of news that I’m sure everybody will welcome with much jubilation! We decided to maintain our Motherhouse!

For over a year now, the generalate in consultation with the German superiors who are well informed about the Motherhouse, has been deliberating on the future. One of our main concerns is the gradually aging and the not so healthy members of the community. Besides, we received from the Fire Department of the city to which Steyl belongs certain security prescriptions, which we thought were beyond our means to fulfill. In addition, the Water Sanitation Department has its requirements, such as renewing most of the water pipe connections, which are impossible for us to comply with. Our Motherhouse, as many Sisters know, belongs to the historical heritage of the city. We therefore went through a long period of discernment among ourselves, and Sister M. Mitis in behalf of the generalate had a number of consultations with responsible persons in the municipality. We tried to exhaust, as far as we could, all possibilities. We thought we would not be able to comply with all the requirements that were presented to us because of the enormous cost and the disturbance and inconvenience they will cause for the Motherhouse community.

At our last meeting at our Motherhouse on March 20-22, we made a leap of faith, and we decided to maintain our Motherhouse, and make it the focus of our plans for the future of our Congregation, and particularly of our European houses. We also decided that our Motherhouse represent the international character of our Congregation. The renovation plan will include suitable living quarters for the generalate. The present generalate, however, will not move to the Motherhouse. We shall leave the definite decision to the general council that will be elected at the 11th general chapter that is due in 2011.

We also plan to make the Motherhouse the novitiate house for our European convents. This will enable our novices to have an experience of the international character of our Congregation. The candidates will have the aspirancy, as well as the postulancy, in the house where they enter. The period of initial formation will be two years in order to give the formandi sufficient time for a thorough orientation to our way of life, and to learn German and English. The international character of the Congregation will be emphasized in the initial formation.

In order to allow the renovation of the Motherhouse to go on smoothly, all the Sisters except four will temporarily join our communities either in Bad Driburg or Berlin. The preparation for the renovation is expected to take four to six months, while the actual work will be completed within eight to ten months. This project will entail a heavy financial burden for the Congregation, but we are confident that God will provide.

Trusting that all of you will continue to support our endeavors with your prayers and sacrifices, without which we cannot accomplish what we see as God’s will, I remain,

Devotedly in the Holy Spirit,

Sister Mary Cecilia