A Religious Formation workshop entitled "Healthy Sexual Integration in Religious Life" was held at Whitefriars Hall in Washington, DC on January 29-30, 2016. The presenters were Fr. Quinn Conners, O.Carm and Dr. Kathy Galleher. Both presenters are psychologists who have worked at the St. Luke Institute (a psychological treatment center for men and women religious) and have been co-presenting this workshop to various inter-community novitiates for more than 10 years. This two day workshop focused on sexual integration in consecrated life for men and women preparing for religious life. It approached sexuality from a holistic psychological perspective and stressed the importance of self-awareness, self-acceptance, integration, and integrity for healthy life-giving celibacy. The workshop included sections on psychosexual integration, , human development, and healthy relationship skills and boundaries. Practical skills for dealing with loneliness, desire, and attractions as well as for deepening relationships inside and outside community were presented. The workshop had educational, self reflection, and discussion components.
Our novice Sr. Pia Ignatius along with her director, Sr. Helena of Mary and Sr. Mary Vianney, O.Carm, participated with the Carmelite novices of the Saint Elias and Most Pure Heart of Mary Provinces. There were also novices from the Congregation of the Marian Helpers, the Pallotines, along with their Formators. On Sunday, January 31st, we visited and toured the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. It was an opportunity we could not miss and were thankful for!
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