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January 19, 2021
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The Renewal Program at the Jesuit School of Theology-Santa Clara University (JST-SCU) provides ordained, vowed religious, and laity, who are depleted or in transition, and other faith-based care providers, change-makers, teachers, leaders, and seekers with theological updating and spiritual renewal. Viewing and reflecting on the Journey of the Universe reminds us that New Life – awe, wonder, amazement, and an integral ecology – are inseparable from Sabbath and sabbatical. In the words of one participant, a Catholic Sister Jojo Fernando, FMM, from the Philippines:
"I honestly feel that the Journey of the Universe aptly gives us a landscape by which, personally, I can re-think my identity as a human person created by the God of the Universe. What Brian Swimme presented so eloquently and dynamically articulated what I cannot fully express in words but deep within I could feel my kinship with the rest of creation every time I gaze at the vast horizon of flowers, trees, animals, birds, galaxies especially the moon and the stars. When Brian said that the stars may be our ancestors I suddenly felt in the darkness of the night full of twinkling, dancing stars, the breath of God, and all creation pulsating with life all around me. Perhaps it’s not that easy to enter into this new paradigm shift but I feel it’s coming. Brian Swimme articulated it well.
We are still operating from an old paradigm of humans apart from nature.
The following words specifically moved me and now part of my ongoing pondering and listening. I am decided to allow this to be part of what God might unfold to me in my onward journey of transformation:
We are in one of the most profound transitions in human history. This story takes us from destruction and despair to a new sense of wonder and purpose. It inspires us to engage in transformative action for planetary health and human well-being.
I indeed participate in the unfolding of the universe, I participate in giving birth to new life, new dynamic interconnectedness of all living beings, of all that God has created. At this time of my journey, I am more excited than ever to be part of the transformation of the universe as I see my own transformation as an integral part of what is happening in the universe."