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beth RindlerSr. Beth Rindler, sfpI have several thoughts in response to Father Gittins' statement: “You are Christians, and therefore people who live, who exude and who heal with hope. It is an essential component of your healing charism.  Your hope is rooted and grounded in God’s promises never to abandon those who love…..”

I believe people who have experienced love from another human being or any other created source, experience the presence of God in their lives. If, for some reason, a person is hurt or injured, whether physically, emotionally or spiritually, healing or wholeness can once again be restored under the right conditions.  This 'ability to heal' exists within our human nature as well as within nature in general.

This phenomenon of healing is a beautiful reality to witness -- or to be a part of -- in oneself or others. I believe that this is why the art of medicine has flourished like it has. It gives many a sense of joy and fulfillment to participate in the healing process, in learning the conditions necessary for healing, and in sharing this knowledge with others.

I don't think I have ever experienced a time in my life when I have ever felt abandoned by God.  Therefore, I think I have always believed that God has always loved me. 

In relating an experience in which I witnessed the healing of other people through the sharing of faith and hope, I recall the birth and life of my youngest sister, Becky.  She was born after I made first vows in 1952. We soon learned that she was going to be different from the rest of us. At the time, I had five other siblings.

It was the first time I had heard of down's syndrome -- and it was not what anyone would choose. However, as Becky grew in our presence, even though, she was different, she came to be valued as much as anyone else. She came with her own personality and definitely wanted to be as much a part of the family as the rest of us.  She turned out to be a very loving person.  She did not like disagreements or arguments, and in her own unique way she would usually say or do something to stop them.

I'm not sure if this is a good example or not. The reason it comes to mind is that her presence among us could have "divided" the family, but she did not. She fit in even with her differences and healed the breach even before it was formed.

Sr. Beth Rindler, sfp