In January we celebrate the birthdays of our foundresses–Sister Maria Aloysia (Hilligonde Wolbring) on January 9 and Sister Maria Ignatia (Elizabeth Kühling) on January 10. Both were teachers who also took care of orphans and eventually began the congregation of the Sisters of Notre Dame—my congregation. In her endearing way, Sister Maria Aloysia wrote to the sisters in 1881, “Most important in our work is the uniting of all our actions with the works of the Divine Savior. Thus we make gold out of stones.” “Making gold out of stones” is more than a cute catchphrase for us sisters. It’s a sacramental reminder. Our foundresses looked upon what they did as a blessed way to unite themselves to God. Cooking dinner for orphans, teaching classes, and preparing for religious vows were daily happenings that became gold by uniting these tasks with the works of the Savior. Gregory Boyle claims the same reality. He says, “We are sacramental to our core when we think that everything is holy. The holy not just found in the supernatural but in the Incarnational here and now.”
What are you doing here and now? Texting? Packing lunches? Driving to work? Cleaning house? Whatever your “here and now” tasks are today, unite them with God. Let Christ’s continuing Incarnation wrap them with his love and unite them to himself. Then you’ll make gold from stones.