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Topical: Gift of Trust

Posted on February 1, 2017, by Donna Day SL

All photos by Donna Day, Roberta Hudlow, and Jean M. Schildz

“What we have to be is what we are. But being what we are requires love, gratitude, forgiveness, trust and living with the mystery that surrounds us in community. They are elusive states of being that often require nurturing and prayer together. Graced by the Spirit of God we are called and gifted into community.”

On the journey of life, there are times we need to find our way back to a few basic realities, truths and values. “What we have to be is what we are.”

The topic of trust is one of the signposts on the road that can give us roots and guidance. To face the challenges of life, to engage the present and the future, we know that “trust is built in small moments,” and build it we must.

The recent Loretto Topical “Gift of Trust” engaged 129 members in an atmosphere of building trust and recognizing the importance of the stories of our lives as we wove together our personal memory, our communal experience and our call to share our gifts with one another so that the entire Community might be strengthened.

The topical was presented in four Loretto places: El Paso, Denver, the Motherhouse and St. Louis.

The following are evaluation words heard in the Topical Take-Aways: “This was nonjudgmental; a deep spirituality; the place to be; what honest people; awareness of myself and others; love my workbook; feels right to talk of trust; shared my own vulnerability; I can ask for advice; willing to walk a shared path; what happened to me as a little kid matters now; remind each other how lucky we are; I can write a pretty good Haiku; feed trust instead of fear; divergence is OK; purposeful living; and courage spoken in love.”

The presenters were Paulette Peterson, Susan Kenney, Joy Gerity, Joyce Ackles, Mary Gutzwiller, Sandra Hareld, Vicki Schwartz and I. Each of us focused on aspects of trust to move participants forward in remembering, in awareness of self, in appreciating the gift of each other, in art play, in intimacy and in prayer.

Stories shared helped us reflect on how living in trust can lead to one’s true self, into finding one’s heart, into listening and support, into laughter and silence — all connections to each other and to our God.

Helen Sanders was right, “Trust Empowers Us.”


Donna Day SL

Donna entered Loretto in 1961 with the best class ever. The members gather often to renew friendships. Donna’s work in Loretto has included many years serving the Hispanic community in Colorado, the African-American community at Pillar Place in St. Louis and countless years on the Loretto staff in health care and as an Interchange editor. Participating on the Topical Committee and traveling to be present with the community all across the country is a real joy. Reading, Cardinal baseball and celebrating all things Irish are among her favorite pastimes.
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