Sunday, October 2, 2016

September Celebrations

Jesus us says that when we have done all things well, we should say that we are “useless servants”.  I must say that I don’t care for that designation!  In fact, I like to consider myself quite useful; I garden, I sew, I do blog posts…So what is this about being useless?  But Jesus says in another place that He “has called us ‘friends’”. Friends do not consider each other as “useful”.  If they do, they are no longer friends; they are perhaps business associates.  What is worse than being “used” by a friend?  Only being “used” by a family member.  “Use” is only one step away from “abuse”.  God is love.  And love is never about utility, but about appreciating, enjoying and giving for the benefit of the other.  God does not need the many wonderful things we can do.  He is interested in loving the wonderful persons we are.

To love means to give the self, the one thing necessary, the only thing the lover desires for and from the beloved.  The cloistered nun, who lives for God alone, and so is considered “useless” by secular standards, is the sacrament of this mystery.  What she does in a very explicit way is what every soul is called to do:  to love the Lord God with all the soul, mind, heart and strength.  During the month of September, we celebrated the First Profession of Sister Veronica Mary, and also the Silver Jubilee of Sister Mary Joyce.  There is a special joy in witnessing ceremonial first giving, and then commemorating the faithful living out of that same self-sacrificial giving in a covenant that has matured over 25 years.  Here are some pictures of both these blessed events:

Sister Veronica Mary and Sister Margaret Mary (novice mistress)

Sister Veronica Mary at the Mass of her Profession

Sister Veronica Mary makes her vows in the hands of Mother Abbess

Receiving the black veil of a professed nun

Our current novitiate along with Sister Margaret Mary and Mother Therese
(next week Casey will join the group)
Sister Mary Joyce leads the procession for her Jubilee Mass

Sister Mary Joyce renews her vows for the 25th time

At Holy Mass

Sister Mary Joyce adorned with a traditional Indian garland