CACS planning underway

Sisters on the planning committee for the Congregational Assembly for Contemplative Sisters (CACS) came to the Province Center in St. Louis  in March to continue planning the sessions for their Assembly. Sister Janice Rushman facilitated the weeklong meetings from March 9-13, 2020. Members of the CACS planning committee are Sisters Reina Escobar (El Salvador), Maureen Johnson (USA), Sadhani Welmillage (Sri Lanka), Cristina Rodriguez De La Cruz (Peru), and Sharon Rose Authorson (USA). Sister Janice is an Apostolic Sister who serves at Vista Maria, the Good Shepherd ministry in Dearborn Heights, Michigan. 


The Congregational Assembly for Contemplative Sisters (CACS), originally scheduled for August 2020, will be rescheduled prior to the Congregational Chapter in 2021. About 55 Contemplative Sisters – elected from every unit in the Congregation that has Contemplative Sisters – will serve as delegates at the Assembly. They will be joined by their Unit Leaders and by several invited guests: both young Sisters in Temporary Vows and Partners in Mission.

During the CACS, nine Contemplative Sisters will be elected as delegates to the 2021 Congregational Chapter, which is to be held from June 11 to July 2, 2021, at the Motherhouse in Angers, France.

During the planning committee meeting in St. Louis, the Sisters spent one day reflecting on “The Meaning of Mary Magdalene in Our Contemplative Life Today.”

The meaning of Mary Magdalene

Early on in the work of the CACS planning committee, the Sisters had experienced a desire to see Mary Magdalene with new eyes, and to find fresh inspiration and challenge from her today. It seemed that these reflections on Mary Magdalene would be the heart, the core, the anchor point for the Assembly work. The Sisters sensed that the Holy Spirit has a strong message regarding the meaning of Mary Magdalene for Good Shepherd contemplative life today.

Actually, this encounter with Mary Magdalene at the Contemplative Sisters’ Assembly can be a grand opportunity for our Apostolic Sisters as well. After all, our Constitution #9 tells us:

“Mary Magdalen (spelling in Constitution), first to witness and proclaim the resurrection, announces for us in a very special way the liberating power of merciful love. She gives us hope that, through this love, all in need of reconciliation can return to the Father.“ (Article 9)

Following the day of reflection, the CACS planning committee turned from the sublime to the more mundane – details, details, and more details. 

The end of the meeting was marked by the sense of a job well done … and by a sharing of t.asks to be completed at home.

Please read our newsletter Items of Interest for more stories about Sisters of the Good Shepherd

Janice Rushman

Janice Rushman

Janice Rushman is an Apostolic Sister of the Good Shepherd. Her Good Shepherd ministries have included working with girls in residential programs, working with the Comboni Missionaries in Appalachia and assisting women trying to reclaim their lives from prostitution and drug addiction.