Remembering Twelve Years
Our mission is to remember. So for thirteen days, we remembered the story of our congregation on May 1 to 13, 2017. We remembered our reason for being. We remembered the twelve years of answering the call to teach the contemplative way of life and to provide sacred spaces to people who want to rest in silence, stillness and serenity.
Our story started with a cuticle remover, spilled on the floor. Simple. Nothing spectacular. That is how our God relates to us. That very ordinary event gave our founder, Sr. Eppie Brasil, OP, the enlightenment and the ear to hear God’s instruction to start a new religious community, with a new mission.
For our founder and her five founding members, that was not easy. They love their former congregation, and it never occurred in their minds that the time would come they have to change direction. That is why it took them nineteen months to discern, verifying the authenticity of the call. God’s will prevailed. Thus, the birth of the Dominican Sisters of Regina Rosarii on May 13, 2005.
The world today is full of noise. It is chaotic. People are too busy, too occupied, falling apart, disconnected. It has always been the desire of Sr. Eppie to offer sacred spaces to the people of the world today, especially to the Filipinos.
When Fr. Willigis Jaeger told her, “Eppie, bring contemplative prayer to your country,” it confirmed her new mission. It came with a set of clapper that she accepted willingly. Gradually, she taught contemplative prayer to small groups, initially attended by her parents Fray Domingo Brasil, OP and Sr. Amelia F. Brasil, OP, and with some friends. That led to the foundation of the Regina Rosarii Contemplative Association (ROCA). Now, it already has eight chapters, with regular contemplative sits every week in the different parts of the country. Its membership is constantly increasing as people, who have longing to feel the presence of God and who want to rest in silence, keep coming.
Four years after the birth of the Dominican Sisters of Regina Rosarii, Our Lady directed Sr. Eppie towards the foundation of Regina Rosarii Institute for Contemplation in Asia in Tanay Rizal in 2009. Since then, the hands of God and Our Lady Regina Rosarii have worked for the development of the place.
There was no plan. There was no blue print. Everything was just put into place with the guiding hands of God. Indeed, He is the master planner, the master architect, and the main developer of the sacred place. God sent people who are experts in different areas of development. He sent people who are willing and able to finance the projects. He is continuously sending volunteers who served as the left and right hand of the new congregation. He sent millions of pilgrims who shared their testimonies and affirmed the reason and meaning of the existence of the sacred space that is Regina RICA.
Miraculously, God never stop working, even at times that the sisters themselves were having clouds of doubt. Because even in those clouds of doubt they never stop believing and obeying. And the God remained true to His promise that He will never abandon His anointed ones.
As Abundance 2 author, Reynaldo Barnido puts it, “Being a faithful daughter, Sr. Eppie Brasil, OP cannot say no to Our Lady and to God; Our Lady Regina Rosarii cannot say no to Sr. Eppie; Jesus cannot say no to His mother Mary; and God the Father cannot say no to Jesus, His Son.” Indeed, for the past fifty years, Sr. Eppie’s life as a Dominican sister is a life of grace, mercy, providence and love of God.
Likewise, the remarkable unfolding of Regina RICA is favored by God because our founder’s desire to have a place where people from all walks of life can be together, can connect, can have healing, can experience God, is aligned to God’s vision.
The twelfth foundation anniversary of the congregation had been a 13-day celebration, moving forward to its eternal existence. It will continue to live as long as it has its communities and mission and the people it serves. When together, each of the sisters and our mission partners takes a personal act that leads to our congregational goal, always we can say that the congregation has the reason to stay, and it will stay forever.
By: Sr. Mary Irene Rafer at July 01, 2017
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