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UMI Spirituality

 

The Spirituality of Blessed Brigida of Jesus, was born of a profound God Consciousness, draws inspiration from the Ignatian spirituality, being ‘contemplative in action’. She is always portrayed holding a Crucifix in her hand; in her exhortations to her daughters she never failed to recommend contemplation of Jesus Crucified and Risen as the basic characteristic of UMI spirituality.

Characteristics Features of our Foundress’ Sprituality:

1.Foundational aspect of UMI Spirituality is Christo-centrism:

Brigida had no other focus than Christ and particularly the love of Christ manifested on the Cross. The more she meditated on the Love of God, the more she felt the need to love Him. She focused on Christ very ardently that she wanted to live like Christ, suffer like Christ and to imitate Him completely, to the extent of being identified with Christ. Her only desire was that she could have a share in Christ’s suffering. Hence the contemplation of Christ Crucified is the core of UMI Spirituality.

She often repeated: “Let the Crucifix we wear be our mirror so that we may conform our life to that of Jesus, our Guide and our Master.”

2.Profound God consciousness:

Blessed Brigida was deeply rooted in profound God consciousness which helped her constantly to be in God’s presence. This enabled her to attain deep union with God.

The visions, ecstasies, colloquies with God and the daily experiences of God she mentioned in the diaries (in three volumes) are nothing but a vivid example of how she was deeply aware of the presence of God.

In order to focus on this God consciousness she also recommends examination of consciousness. She considers it as a highly efficacious exercise because if it is done effectively, one cannot continue long in defects.

3.Contemplative in Action:

Brigida’s intense union with God, led her to be a contemplative in action. She always aspired to strike a balance between contemplation and action, between interiority and a life of dedicated service to God and the neighbor.

4.Abandonment and Conformity to the Will of God:

The God consciousness also led her to abandonment and conformity to the Will of God. Every turn of life she sought the Will of God; in the early stages of her life, she wanted to become a religious. She could not think of any other way of life than being a religious. Then, she realized that marriage is God’s Will for her and so she chose to marry. However, when her husband passed away within four years, she committed herself to religious life.

5.Deep Faith and unwavering Trust in the Lord:

Brigida’s spirituality is marked by deep faith and unwavering trust in the Lord. In founding the Institute this stands out in a striking manner. Though had to face numerous obstacles, nothing deterred her in accomplishing the task God had entrusted to her.

She says: Confidence, confidence a large heart, God is our Father and He will never abandon us; in the service of God we need a large heart but one founded on humility.

6.Spirituality centered on Charity:

She practiced charity, right from the childhood. She begins the spiritual journey as a simple lay person, in various stages of her life: girlhood, married life and religious. In all these stages charity was the outstanding virtue in life.

She dedicated herself fully to God in the service of neighbor. In fact, Love for God and love for neighbour was the hallmark of her life.

7.Devotion to Blessed Mother Mary:

Brigida loved Mary, the Immaculate Mother of God, with tenderness. She venerated Her and instilled in her daughters the truth that Mary is the most faithful follower of Her Son, Jesus. Loving and imitating Her, is the shortest way to holiness. (Ad Jesum per Maria – to Jesus through Mary)

8.Spiritual Joy:

Brigida realized that only when one suffers with true love, there is true meaning in suffering. She accepted all the hardships joyfully. Therefore, she marks spiritual joy as the important feature of her spirituality.

The real remedy for sadness she says lies in turning towards Christ Crucified and Risen so that our love for Christ is deepened.

“Leave sadness and melancholy to those who do not possess God’s grace or who are in danger of losing it; sad faced religious discredit the spiritual life causing people to believe that a virtuous life is full of worries.” is her inspiration to the Ursulines through her life and teachings.