Called to Become One Body in Christ
The Province of the United States - Canada is one of 34 provinces in the international Society of the Sacred Heart. Religious of the Sacred Heart consider themselves members of this one international community, and this unity is important. The words cor unum et anima una in Corde Jesu (one heart and one soul in the Heart of Jesus) appear on the cross each one wears.
Just eighteen years after its founding, the Society of the Sacred Heart became an international organization when Rose Philippine Duchesne and her companions journeyed to the wilds of Missouri. The early Religious of the Sacred Heart did not let political boundaries stand in their way, and today’s RSCJ won't either. Internationality, so much a part of the Society of the Sacred Heart throughout its history, may prove to be one of the defining characteristics of its future.
Right now, sixteen U.S. and Canadian RSCJ are currently serving in other countries, from Canada to Uganda. Some, like Sister Nance O’Neil in Indonesia or Sister Carlota Duarte in Mexico, have ministered outside the U.S. for more than two decades. Anne Wachter, RSCJ, left her beloved Convent of the Sacred Heart, San Francisco, to lead Sacred Heart School in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Several U.S. RSCJ are in Rome as part of the Society’s administration, including Superior General Kathleen Conan. Finally, each year RSCJ serve in countries like Haiti, Uganda, Indonesia or Peru.
Internationality – living without borders – requires openness, mutual respect, an acceptance of differences and an attempt at understanding those differences through dialogue.
Internationality. Unity. Cor unum. In the Society of the Sacred Heart, they are very much the same experience. With it come trust, acceptance, growth, joy … and the confidence and strength to continue Sophie’s mission.