Our Life of Prayer
A call to become a Schoenstatt Sister of Mary is a religious calling, a call to a profound life of faith, love of God, and the fulfilment of God’s will in daily life. A deep life of prayer is indispensable for our vocation and helps to sustain our high degree of surrender.
An atmosphere of prayer
It is essential for us as a community to foster an atmosphere of prayer in our houses. We do this not only in our times of prayer, but also by observing periods of silence throughout the day. Amid the demands of our work and apostolate, our founder urged us to foster “the cloister of the heart,” always remembering that our heart is a shrine where God and Our Lady constantly wait for an encounter of love. By cultivating an uplifting atmosphere, either through our words or our silence, we help to make such encounters with the divine a reality for one another.
Our prayer life is deeply Marian. Our Lady is our example of prayer. Moreover, in our prayer we foster our covenant of love with her. We foster our attachment to the shrine, our favourite place to pray and be with God and our Blessed Mother. We have regular hours of adoration before the Blessed Sacrament which we term our “Marian guard of honour” as we want to love and adore Christ as Mary did. We spend time in prayer with the father and founder of our community and let his love for Mary enkindle our own hearts. All our community prayers, mostly composed by Father Kentenich, have a strong Marian element. Our day is filled with hymns of love and praise to the Blessed Mother.
Much of our time is spent on apostolic work. Our founder wanted this as we were created for the apostolate. However, he also emphasized the importance of quality times of prayer throughout the day that unite us with God and give us strength and energy for our daily tasks. The atmosphere we create in and around us through our life of prayer is in itself an apostolate!
This prayerful atmosphere helps to make our entire day a prayer whereby we adore God’s will and strive to live in union with him wherever we are and in all that we say and do.
We are surrounded by the values and goods of the world. What the present day world needs are people who radiate the presence of God and Mary and thereby make ‘heaven’ a tangible reality for others. We cannot give what we do not possess. In order to give others an experience of God’s presence, we must seek his presence in our own lives.
According to the words of Fr Kentenich, “We have to contribute to a life-stream which carries a religious atmosphere. This is an inconspicuous but exceedingly effective apostolate.”