According to a Chinese legend, the phoenix bird flew into a fire on the altar of a temple and burned to ashes. It then emerged alive again and flew away to live for 500 years more. This act is repeated every 500 years.
No one has ever seen a real phoenix. It is a purely imaginary and symbolic creature, symbolizing hope, new life, and living forever.
This appropriately characterizes the vision of a Sister for the Church. She too portrays a hope-filled future by responding to the radical call of the Gospel. Hers is a new life in the Church, experiencing the persistent challenges of witnessing to the Presence of Christ. Through her, a creative power will emerge, fusing into the new embodiment of God, the contemporary Christ.