From the Executive Director

We are approaching Gaudete Sunday. What do you have to rejoice about this year? Many moments of rejoicing in community have been curtailed over the last year and a half. Recently, more and more religious men are gathering for communal times of rejoicing, of grieving, and of discernment and decision-making. The latter two are often the ones that leaders focus on. Having times of rejoicing is nice, but often a leader, when gathering for those moments, also spends much time hearing the hurts, pains, challenges, and problems of community members. That is why it is important to take time to specifically focus in thought and prayer on what we can rejoice about this year.

St. Paul, in his Letter to the Philippians (4:4-9) connects rejoicing with the peace that comes from Christ. He is reminding the community that their rejoicing is about God’s activity in their lives. God is acting in and through our communal life as well. Assisting a community in seeing this activity is part of leadership.

Recently, we began conducting a leadership survey of our members. We have received an excellent response thus far and encourage anyone who has not completed this short survey to do so. The link to it is below.

While challenges and needs will arise from the survey, we also invite you to reflect on and share the ways in which you rejoice as a leader – the ways you recognize the activity of God and find peace in Christ who is always our cause for rejoicing.

In prayerful solidarity,

Fr. Frank Donio, SAC
Executive Director

This is an excerpt from the December Items of Note. Items of Note is a monthly email for CMSM members and partners. If you are not receiving Items of Note once a month via email, please email