Monday, August 15, 2011

Long Distance Community

Community life is one of the pillars of our lives as Dominicans.  But when you suddenly find yourself living alone and 900 miles from the closest congregation member, how do you form community?  This is what happened to me a few years ago.  Thanks to e-mail I felt connected to the congregation, but it wasn't the same as having a conversation, a discussion, praying with another person. 

Two years ago eight of us who are in similar situations formed a phone community.  At first I was skeptical that we could really become a community.  It did take a few months for us to feel comfortable with this type of communication, partly because most of us didn’t know each other well. However, it works!   Besides, it has been a blessing in my life.  We meet once a month and begin with prayer and then a check-in.  I find out who needs extra support, prayers for a family member, just others to listen.  I no longer feel as isolated, and I know that others know some of my day-to-day struggles and joys. 

A future goal of our community is to have meetings where we can see one another, maybe using a tool like Flash—I look forward to that day. What are your thoughts about this type of community?

Marie Lucek, OP
Juneau, Alaska

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