July is for picnics, fireworks and family.  In my youth, I felt God calling me to be part of a big family.  This July I am thinking of my family that includes:

·      -  a Chinese woman who we quizzed on civics questions, as she prepares for her citizenship interview

·      -  a friend who, with one of our sisters, is spending time making her Hogan in Navaho country more livable (We stayed home to dog sit.)

        - men and women of EXPO (Ex Prisoners Organizing)

     - my blood sister’s family, where we share great stories of today and yesterday.

A New York Times article Sunday, July 2 caught my eye.  “Wary When Alone With Worker of Opposite Sex? Join the crowd.” By Clair Cain Miller, who made the question come to life through a survey of 5,300 people.

As a Dominican Sister who has made a permanent commitment to God through the gift of celibacy, I find myself freer to talk with women, children and men since they do not see a relationship with me in conflict with their committed relationships.

One of the greatest blessings of my life is counting as family people of every gender, many cultures and even the crows and the flowers.

Are you searching for a family for your life?  How is God calling you to family?

Joan Duerst, OP
Madison, WI


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