Mary Ward’s understanding of freedom was grounded in her sense of a personal relationship with God. She believed that everyone can have free and open access to God and can find God in the ordinary experiences of each day. This is the truth that sets us free. It is an inner freedom, accepting of self, open to others and trusting of life.
Justice, as Mary Ward describes it, involves personal integrity based on a harmonious relationship with God, with other people and with the whole of creation. It is expressed in works of justice, in active participation in the struggle to bring God’s reign to our world.
Sincerity in our communication and relationship with others is an essential characteristic of the personal integrity Mary Ward envisaged. Her ideal was that we should be such as we appear and appear such as we are.
For Mary Ward, verity embodies integrity and truth, particularly the profound truth of who we are and what gives meaning to our lives, a truth that centres fundamentally on the mystery of God. It challenges us to invest our everyday living with value: This is verity – to do what we have to do well. – Mary Ward
Felicity is an attitude of mind, a disposition of the heart which manifests itself in cheerfulness, joy, hope, optimism, courtesy, positive thinking, inner peace and self-acceptance.
“…that true happiness is not to be found in wealth, luxury, or selfish enjoyments; these things can only give a passing joy; they are like the artificial lights which can be made appear in the sky at night; bright, beautiful, many-coloured, but of short duration, and making the darkness seem more dense when they have passed away.” – “A Mother’s Letter to Her Children”, Eucalyptus Blossoms, Dec. 1893, LPA