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24 January

Saint Francis de Sales
1810, death of Marie-Thérèse Chirat (64 years old) Marcellin’s mother

Marist Calendar - January

Three hundred and sixty-five days of hope



A survey at the start of the year

02/03/2006: General House

In this way, you could summarise the proposal of our survey at the start of the new year. What do you expect from the year? The cycle of the new year begins with the inauguration of continuity; one more year, like the previous one, like so many others. It is the secret of the wheel, the symbol of repetition. If we were to think this way, we could expect nothing new from the year, only repetition of the usual. But we speak of having expectations for the year as it offers us many opportunities to exercise hope. How can we live without hope in our hearts?

But the change of some digits in time doesnt imply changes in the behaviour of people. This is not a cause and effect relationship. As the earth continues to rotate, people’s hearts do not always seek roads of conversion. But there is the possibility that as the wheel of our life turns, encouraged by hope and faith, there can be in each turn, pages of creativity that sum up our biography.

Hope is not a mere wait for tomorrow. Hope for believers is a theological virtue in which we expect eternal life from God, in firm trust, not because we deserve it but because God has promised it to us. Solid and alive hope can only exist in the commitment that urges us to “live better lives”. This commitment has even more dynamism if it becomes strong in the faith of God present in the heart of the world, as shown in the life and message of Jesus of Nazareth. With this attitude, hooked to the wheel of time, and trusting God, we express our desires and hopes for the new year.

Two hundred and sixty-four people took part in our survey on the web page. 70% of the respondents said they hoped for peace in the world. 15.5% said they hoped that 2006 would be the opportunity to realise new projects. 9.8% said they wanted good health in the new year and finally 3.8% said that they hoped for more money.

We do not know the identity of the 264 participants who collaborated in the survey during the month of January but their decided option for peace is quite evident. Hopefully their hope is not frustrated in spite of so much violence as we have already seen in these first months of the year. May they continue to work at building peace in the world!

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