Envisioning the Future of Consecrated Life


Bible Features

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Rembrandt Harmenzoon van Rijn is considered the greatest visual Dutch artist of his time because his paintings evoke emotion and motive. Inside Envisioning the Future of Consecrated Life: Its Beauty and Challenge During these Troubled Times, author Eileen Jaramillo features this painter's biblical art to stir the reader into deep thought about the person of Christ, the universal call to respond to a world in turmoil, and the particular charism of women and men religious within that framework. Women and men religious are consecrated in a special way because they have committed themselves to the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity, and obedience. This is radical living of the life of Christ within the world. Here, the author addresses the challenges that are as much a part of the lives of religious as they are for others-secularism, injustice, poverty, and the environment-while also highlighting the distinctive Spirit-centered charism of women and men religious as the foundation for their particular response to these challenges. It is well known that the number of Catholic nuns, sisters, brothers, and priests has declined since the 1960s. Using statistics from the Center for the Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA), the author looks at that decline along with the way women and men religious are re-envisioning their lives through mergers, unions, and reorganizations. Furthermore, Jaramillo offers insight into new religious communities that are coming into existence and the new form of consecrated life that is emerging. Envisioning the Future of Consecrated Life gives voice to what younger sisters are saying about the future. In these pages, the beauty of consecrated life resonates while the challenges are not ignored. The future of consecrated life is becoming a reality in the present. Right now, this very moment in time, presents an exciting adventure for women and men religious to transform the world by living their radical commitment to Christ the way it was lived in the past.


Eileen Jaramillo, Author

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