I believe every congregation is unique, as each founder or foundress is or was inspired by the signs of the times to respond to a specific situation. Nano Nagle, the foundress of the Presentation Sisters, was moved by the plight of the poor Catholic population in Ireland in the 18th century as they reeled under the draconian Penal Laws, which denied them every possible right — including the right to practice their religion and the right to education.
It was at great personal risk that Nano Nagle began her schools for the education of poor Catholics. She wanted to liberate them from ignorance and poverty and the degradation into which they had been immersed by unjust social and political structures.
Nano's last words to the small community that gathered around her death bed were, "Love one another and spend yourselves for the poor."
It is this message that the Presentation Sisters strive to live out as we engage ourselves in varied ministries across the globe to be the human face of God and the compassionate presence of Jesus wherever we are. Education and care of the vulnerable and powerless is our prime focus.
Despite the dwindling numbers in membership, we respond whenever and wherever the need calls, even venturing into unknown territories. We work to ensure that the dignity of people is respected and their rights are upheld by engaging in compassionate service.
Though we do not directly share a charism with one particular group of religious sisters, collaboration with like-minded people is very much a part of us. We collaborate with different dioceses and nongovernmental organizations. We also have Friends Of Nano Movement and Lay Associate Movement, who join hands with us in furthering the reign of God in these challenging times.
We have also formed a network of Presentation Sisters around the world, called the International Presentation Association, to foster unity and enable collaborations for the sake of mission.
Our mission is to speak and act in partnership with others for global justice from a contemplative stance in a spirit of oneness with the whole of creation.
The association comprises the three Presentation Units: the Union of Presentation Sisters, the Conference of Presentation Sisters of North America, and the Presentation Society of Australia and Papua New Guinea.
The International Presentation Association assembly takes place once every five years, and the deliberations made there are carried out in our ministries across the globe.
We're delighted to bring you this excerpt from the monthly feature "The Life", courtesy of our friends at Global Sisters Report. This month, "The Life" asked the panelists to share their insights into the uniqueness of their congregation. Read the full article here.