"…all good preaching springs from conversation. We love the fact that St. Dominic founded the Order in a pub! All night long he argued with the innkeeper, an Albigensien whose religion denied the goodness of creation…good conversation implies that you not only share your faith but that you listen to the other person, and are open to what he or she can teach you." (Timothy Radcliffe, OP, in Dominican Way edited by Lucette Verboven, p. 2)
A number of Dominican Sisters of Peace who reside in the greater New Haven, CT, area recently gathered with over 24 local faith-based communities of Christians, Muslims, and Jews for an interfaith walk through the downtown area designed to express a common desire for peace. Walking side by side with persons from other faith traditions provided ample opportunity for rich conversation. The walk's slogan captured the sentiments of the participants, "We do not need to agree on everything to work together for justice and peace."
I find it interesting that a number of women who are exploring the possibility of religious life in our Church are attracted to the Dominican Sisters of Peace in part because of our name. These discerners, like St. Dominic himself, show an openness to dialogue with others who may think differently than they, and really seem to want to cultivate inner and outer peace grounded in a personal relationship with the Prince of Peace. They also seem to recognize, as Fr. John Dear says, that "…nonviolence is no longer a pious option or a political tactic. It is a key to understanding Jesus." (John Dear, SJ in Living Peace, p. 85)
If you are thinking about religious life, and see yourself described above, you may want to consider attending our next vocation discernment retreat to be held over the Labor Day weekend.