Our values

As sisters of Our Lady of Sion, we share a wealth of values that are embodied in everything we are and do.

Here are the values we cherish most dearly:

Rootedness in the Bible

Our outlook on life is informed by the Bible, whose message reveals God’s faithful love for the Jewish people and through them for all peoples. The Hebrew Scriptures remain a common bond between Jews and Christians that we value highly. We are enriched by both Christian and Jewish interpretations of the texts. We are called to keep the Word of God, both Old and New Testaments, in our hearts, to meditate on it, to study it, to share it, and to act on it. A sister of Sion doesn’t only read the Bible, she lives in it.

On the subject of rootedness in the Bible

Deuteronomy 30:14 says:

“The word is very near to you; it is in your mouth and in your heart for you to observe.”

Luke 24:45 says:

“He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures.” 

Our founder, Théodore, says:

“All of Scripture can be summed up as leading us to understand how much God loves us and how we are to respond in love.”

Our Constitution says:

“The Word of God is a living spring; it is nourishment, support and the light of life.”

Love

Love is the distinctive mark of Sion communities. It is entwined in everything we are and everything we do. It’s present when we listen, when we reflect, and when we act. It’s there in our everyday encounters. It pervades our fidelity, our thanks, our prayer. God’s steadfast love and mercy lead us to work unceasingly for reconciliation, interfaith harmony, justice, peace and care of the Earth.

On the subject of love

Leviticus 19:33-34 says:

“The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself, for you were the aliens in the land of Egypt.”  

Matthew 22:37-39 says:

“‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and first commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’”

Our founder, Théodore, says:

“It doesn’t matter how we express our love, provided we do love.”

Our Constitution* says:

“We have heard the personal call of God, the same summons to total love which God addressed to the people of Israel. It comes to us today through Jesus Christ in his Church.” 

* There are over 30 references to “love” in our Constitution!

Prayerfulness

Prayer is central in our lives. It helps us transcend our fears, take risks and have the courage to go forward into the unknown. Each sister’s personal commitment to daily prayer is an important expression of her faith and a means of her ongoing growth. Whatever form our community prayer takes, it is always Biblical.

On the subject of prayerfulness

I Chronicles 16:11 says:

“Seek God and the divine strength; seek God’s presence continually!”

Ephesians 6:18 says:

“Pray in the Spirit at all times.”

Our founder, Théodore, says:

“To pray is to love. When I speak about prayer I am speaking about love.”

Our Constitution says:

“We constantly seek the face of God. Sometimes God reveals the divine image to us in the silence of contemplation to which we give our time freely, open to receive.”

Justice

Our understanding of justice is rooted in Biblical tradition. It is about the value of Shalom: a state of soundness, wholeness, peace and harmony. We journey together in Sion for justice – for the poor, the discriminated, the victims of unjust structures; for refugees, migrants, victims of oppression; for the repair and preservation of Creation. In a world crying out to be healed, we aspire to justice and reconciliation within and with our common home, planet Earth.

On the subject of justice

Micah 6:8 says:

“What does the Lord require of you, but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” 

Luke 4:18-19 says:

“He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.” 

Our founder, Théodore, says:

“Justice resides in truth and in the integrity of relationships. Justice is harmony; it is the perfect order that God has established in eternity. Justice is truth.”

Our Constitution says:

The history of the Jewish people makes us particularly sensitive to the rights of minorities, of the poor and of all who are marginalized in our society.”

Openness

We live in many different contexts in different countries. Wherever we are, we embrace interculturality. A basic attitude of openness and hospitality supports our quest to build bridges between peoples, religions and cultures. Within an array of social contexts, each person is unique and the diverse ways they are gifted deserve respect. By valuing diversity, we enrich our own lives. With humility and openness, care and truthfulness, we listen to the voices around us, learning respect for the other in our response.

On the subject of openness

Isaiah 54:2 says:

“Enlarge the site of your tent, and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out; do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes.”

Matthew 25:35 says:

“I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”

Our founder, Théodore, says:

“It is in the crucible of plurality that unity is forged.”

Our Constitution says:

“It is by a freely chosen simplicity of life that we can find a liberating and inner freedom, making us open and receptive to all without distinction of persons.”

Community

We have a deep desire for community, and strive to live it well. The support we give each other within our international membership strengthens the family spirit that unites us, equipping us to carry that spirit into new situations. We welcome new forms of community life wherever we are and work together with those around us to create meaningful bonds, based on dialogue and right relationships. Our desire and effort for community speak of our hope for universal reconciliation.

On the subject of community

Psalm 133:1 says:

How very good and pleasant it is when sisters and brothers live together in unity.” 

Matthew 18:20 says:

For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them.”

Our founder, Théodore, says:

“The spirit of Sion is a spirit of expansive love which leads us to communicate willingly to others what we possess within our own family circle.”

Our Constitution says:

“The community needs others and exists for others. We want to be present and concerned with our world. We welcome all who come and we are enriched and challenged by these encounters.”

Awareness

From a standpoint of love for the world, we are attentive to the signs of the times and integrate this into our prayer and activities. Sensitivity to current events opens our ears and our hearts to those in need. With the newspaper in one hand and the Bible in the other, we discern with lucidity, responding to God’s call for justice by questioning, confronting indifference and doing all in our power to combat inequalities and discrimination. We are sensitive to the many issues in today’s world that require our action to preserve nature, the environment and all of Creation.

On the subject of awareness

Psalm 119:18 says:

“Open my eyes, so that I may behold wondrous things out of your law.” 

Matthew 15:32 says:

“Jesus called his disciples to him and said, ‘I have compassion for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, for they might faint on the way.’” 

Our founder, Théodore, says:

“The longer I live, the more convinced I am that the work of Sion is a work for the present day.”

Our Constitution says:

“We must keep abreast with socio-political realities and their evolution if we are to recognize the call of the Spirit in today’s world, inviting us to change our attitudes and outlook.”

Find out more about our identity.