A year ago, in mid-December, the Presentation of Mary Infirmary was moved to 3101-3rd Avenue East. Our elderly and ill Sisters adjusted very well considering the change in space from one home to the other. The fact that some of these women had spent most of their life in the same house could have been a much greater problem than it turned out to be.
We were only eight at the outset, so we made a spare bedroom into a little chapel which held the real Presence, that of the Blessed Sacrament. We have now grown to a group of 13 Sisters, so the main lounge is, at times, chapel, and at other times TV, craft and dining room. To begin with, Mass was sporadic, but we now celebrate the Eucharist three times a week with one or the other of our Deanery 1 Priests. On the other days we participate in “Daily TV Mass” and receive Communion.
We continue with our community and individual prayer life, our meals together, and find many ways to have fun as a group. In their leisure time, the Sisters work on word-searches, games on computer, translations, and simply enjoy the company of each other. Group crafts, cards and games often elicit bursts of laughter!
We often have people who just drop in to say hello and pass some time with us. Hospitality is very high on our agenda. We try to remain in contact with those with whom we have worked as well as with family and friends.
Though we have outgrown our little Chapel, our day starts with prayer and ends with prayer. God uses us in mysterious ways because, behind the scenes, we are a power-house of prayer for others. As Pope Francis said so well in Rome, on September 28, 2014: Old age is a time of grace, in which the Lord will renew his call: he calls us to preserve and transmit the faith, calls us to pray, especially to intercede; calls us to be close to those who may be in need. The elderly have a capacity to understand the most difficult situations: a great ability – and when they pray for these situations, their prayer is strong. It is powerful. That is our mission and we take it seriously!