A joyfully Franciscan view of Catholic life, inspired by St. Clare (Santa Chiara) of Assisi!

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Chiara Offreduccio (St. Clare) was born in 1194. It is said that when her mother had Chiara in her womb, an angel appeared to her and said, "your child will be a light that will illuminate the world!" Hence, her mother named the child Chiara, which means "light. As G.K. Chesterton put it, St. Clare was a romantic figure just like Juliet was. However, instead of running away from her family in order to be with an earthly man, Clare gave up everything and ran away from her family for the love of her Savior!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

"When Irish Nuns are Smiling...": Poor Clares of Galway, Ireland


It's been quite a while since I've done a "monastery focus" post, and it's due time that I finally give credit to the nuns who were responsible for taking the silouette picture featured in my title bar! If I had found the source of the picture when I made the title-bar nearly a year ago, I certainly would have credited it to the Poor Clare Nuns of Galway, Ireland. However, I simply did an "image google" for the word "contemplative" and I found the picture standing alone without a link to its source. Sorry, sisters! If you happen to read this, please let me know if you'd like me to change the picture.

Just as I stumbled across the picture, I stumbled across the Galway Poor Clares' website- but it was indeed a happy stumble! I originally was going to do a quick post featuring the blessing of St. Clare, so once again I "googled" the term "St. Clare blessing," which led me to the Galway nuns' website. To put it in Irish terms, finding their website was like finding a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!

This beautiful community of St. Clare's daughters reflects the joyful simplicity of the Franciscan charism. Their website isn't all that high tech (and you'd be surprised at how many Poor Clares that I know who are web-design gurus!) but it is nonetheless brimming with love and joy!

Just from looking at the website, I can tell that the Galway Poor Clares are very much committed to helping all of us in the world embrace a love of prayer and contemplation within our hearts. It reiterates the fact that contemplatives choose their way of life in order to help us in the world become more holy, not because they want to "run away" from the world.

As a case in point, check out their page on "prayer for busy people." They've come up with their list of psalms for certain moods, tips on praying the rosary, and even a page on praying with St. Clare. Wow! Getting prayer tips from these nuns is like getting cooking tips from a world-class chef!

The Galway Poor Clares' photo galleries especially brought a smile to my face. The photos reflect beautiful and childlike sense of humour, wonder, and piety with which the Irish have particularly been blessed. You can also see their Irish humour in these fun little cartoons.

Sisters, if you all happen to be crowding around your little computer like in the above picture, may God reward you for sharing your love and joy with us in the world!

7 Comments:

Blogger Drew said...

The nuns look so cute!

7:26 PM  
Blogger Carolina Cannonball said...

Wow, I lap top. I always imagined nuns crowding around an old pc with a dial up connections... you know, so they could offer their suffering up.

I enjoyed the link. You have a very beautiful blog. :)

11:01 AM  
Blogger Carolina Cannonball said...

Wow, I lap top. I always imagined nuns crowding around an old pc with a dial up connections... you know, so they could offer their suffering up.

I enjoyed the link. You have a very beautiful blog. :)

11:04 AM  
Blogger Carolina Cannonball said...

Wow, I lap top. I always imagined nuns crowding around an old pc with a dial up connections... you know, so they could offer their suffering up.

I enjoyed the link. You have a very beautiful blog. :)

11:07 AM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

The Poor Clares in Galway are a joyous community. Thank you for sharing.

11:31 AM  
Blogger Charles of New Haven said...

Thanks for the post, Chiara. I did part of my undergraduate in Galway, and remember it quite fondly.

10:03 PM  
Blogger Chris Dickson said...

I agree with Drew; they look so cute!

How marvelous to see sisters dressed like sisters and not Brownie Scout Leaders!!!!

I know, 3 Our Father's and 2 Hail Mary's ....

9:14 PM  

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