This summer Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity will watch about 95 butterflies flutter into the world. Here’s three reflections on these creatures in process.
Milkweed is essential to survival for these creatures. It is good to contemplate that we begin similarly relying on a singular diet of milk alone our own first days as infants.
An intake of air is needed to expand and split open the chrysalis, allowing the butterfly to emerge. (Caterpillar and adult butterflies have breath through tiny pores called spiracles. From each spiracle a tube called a trachea carries oxygen to the body.)
Again, we were reminded of how a human person is born. A baby must gasp for air and begin breathing on its own within 10 seconds after delivery. Breath is a sign of life.
Every fourth generation of butterflies is different. It goes through egg, caterpillar and chrysalis stages, but the butterfly stage is much longer. It is 6-8 months. The butterfly migrates to Mexico and then returns to lay eggs for the first generation. During this 150th anniversary, we can’t help but be grateful for all the generations of Sisters that make up our Community. How can’t we be amazed and in awe of each generation of creatures as they fulfill their mission in our world.