Sr. Bernadette Marie's place mat in the refectory for this special day
Today Sr. Bernadette Marie of the Sacred Heart, OP made her first profession of vows. It was quite an event, as our bishop asked to combine the ceremony with the annual celebration for the religious men and women of the diocese on this day honoring consecrated life. So...we had Sr. Bernadette Marie's family. all the religious in the diocese, and various friends of the monastery. What a day!
Sr. Bernadette Marie listens as our chaplain, Fr. Paul Philibert, proclaims the Gospel
Sr. Mary John, our prioress, questions Sr. Bernadette Marie before her profession of vows
Sr. Bernadette Marie makes profession in the hands of the prioress. Dominicans profess only one vow, obedience, which includes the other evangelical counsels (chastity and poverty). Sister promised obedience for three years. If all goes well, after that she will promise obedience "until death".
Bishop Strickland was here for the celebration of consecrated life, and he was the main celebrant at our Mass today. Here he blesses Sr. Bernadette Marie's scapular before giving her the black veil.
While Sr. Bernadette Marie visited with her family, we enjoyed a fun visit with the religious women (and two religious men) of the Tyler diocese! We have many religious orders represented in our diocese, including the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth, the Brigittines, the Jesuits, the Fransalians, the Carmelites, Incarnate Word Sisters, and the Eucharistic Franciscan Missionary Sisters, to name just a few. We are also from many nations, including Poland, India, Mexico, and Hungary as well as our own community which has sisters from Vietnam, Cuba, Tanzania, and Haiti.
It was truly a day blessed by God. Even the weather was lovely! We hope you will join us in praying for Sr. Bernadette Marie as she begins this new stage of her religious life--and hopefully, in three years, you will be reading about her solemn profession!