Life with the Cloistered Domincan Nuns

Life with the Cloistered Domincan Nuns

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Spaghetti Dinner Report!

As you may be aware, some good friends of the Monastery held a chicken spaghetti dinner for the benefit of the Monastery and particularly to raise money for our much-needed generator about two weeks ago. We're delighted to report that it was a huge success! In fact, although the dinner was supposed to last until 7:30 PM, they ran out of food long before then! We are so grateful to all the many good people who organized this dinner and made sure everything involved (food, supplies, etc.) was donated--we never could have done this! And we are also grateful for all who came and ate and participated in the raffle and donated to our cause. We are still in need of some funds to get our generator all paid for, but this event certainly helped tremendously! We are really overwhelmed by all the generosity and kindness the community of Lufkin (and the wider community outside our town, who have sent donations and prayers) has shown us. May God bless you all and reward you abundantly! We are keeping you all in our prayers, too!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Praying for Boston and West, TX

This has been a difficult week for us in many ways, especially as we have said our final (in this life) goodbyes to our Sr. Mary Agnes. But we have been keeping the situations in Boston and West, TX in our hearts and minds and prayers. We have family members and friends who live in Boston and friends and former students who live in West, TX. We keep all these in our special prayers as we pray constantly to God for peace for our troubled world and an end to violence of any kind.

World Day of Prayer for Vocations

This Sunday in the season of Easter is traditionally known as "Good Shepherd Sunday" because of the Gospel readings, but it also happens to be the World Day of Prayers for Vocations! You can see the connection! 

Now, if you are considering a religious vocation--we hope you might consider the Dominicans! Our Order is composed of nuns, friars, active sisters, and laity. If you're a young woman interested in the contemplative life we hope you will check out the nuns--hopefully our monastery! We are a vibrant community who pray the entire Liturgy of the Hours every day, have daily Mass and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. We wear the habit and are joyfully faithful to the Church. And we have a good time doing all this! For more information about our community, we encourage you to check out our website. Or send us an email and we'd be delighted to send you some information via snail mail, too. 

Now, if you're a man interested in religious life--or a young woman interested in active religious life--we still encourage you to check out the Dominicans! There are four provinces of Dominican friars in the United States and numerous congregations of active sisters who follow the Dominican charism. Maybe God is calling you to one of these!

Today is a great day to start discerning whether you might have a religious vocation and maybe begin actively looking into where God might be calling you. We have a group of young women from our diocese who are coming to our monastery to do just that today! Wherever God is calling you, know that you are in our prayers!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Remembering Sister Mary Agnes

Today is the feast of St. Agnes of Montepulciano--which was Sr. Mary Agnes' feast day--so it seems an appropriate day to remember her!

Sister Mary Agnes began her religious life in St. Catharine, Kentucky with the Dominican sisters there (now the Dominican Sisters of Peace). She entered in September 1943 and made her first profession on August 15, 1945. On June 17, 1955, Sister Mary Agnes transferred to our monastery.

Sister held many positions in our monastery, including bursar (treasurer), sub-prioress, and prioress. For many years she also worked in the Infant Jesus Guild office, answering mail and creating beautiful enrollments.
Sister loved writing letters to her family and friends--whether on a typewriter or (later) on the computer!

She came from Nebraska and always followed the Nebraska sports teams carefully.

 Sr. Mary Agnes was a true community person. Here we see her pulling a raffle ticket from our large dryer in April 2012.

She had a great sense of humor and a wonderful smile!

Sister Mary Agnes on her 90th birthday

Sister Mary Agnes spent countless hours at prayer, interceding for the world. She was a lot of fun to be around, too. We miss her, but we know she has gone to God and we live in the hope that one day we will see her again!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Rosary and Funeral Mass Times for Sister Mary Agnes

The Rosary for Sister Mary Agnes will be on Monday, April 15 at 7:00 PM in the Monastery chapel.

Sister Mary Agnes' funeral Mass will be on Tuesday, April 16 at 2:00 PM in the Monastery chapel, procession to the cemetery and burial following (weather permitting).

For more information on funerals at the Monastery, we encourage you to check out our Spring 2012 issue of "Monastery Bells", here.

Rest in Peace, Sister Mary Agnes OP

Our dear Sister Mary Agnes entered eternal life on April 12, 2013, at about 8:45 in the evening. We will post Mass and rosary times when we know them. Please keep our sister in your prayers.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Dinner--and Nuns--in the News--UPDATED

The Friends of the Monastery, who have been helping us raise money for the generator, have teamed up with community members here in Lufkin for a fundraiser--a chicken spaghetti dinner, to be held at the First United Methodist Church fellowship hall on Thursday, April 11. The dinner is free, but donations are gratefully accepted to help with our generator project. There will also be a raffle and some really nice prizes have been donated. The dinner will served from 4:30 - 7 PM. If you're in the East Texas area on Thursday, please come and help support the monastery's generator project! We are so grateful to you for all your help! 

And if this wasn't enough...this spaghetti dinner and our monastery have been featured in the Lufkin Daily News (our local paper) and on KTRE, our local Lufkin/Nacogdoches ABC affiliate! Check out the video, etc. HERE!

We will be bringing you more generator news in the near future. Thanks so much for all the help and all the donations! We are infinitely grateful for everything!

Here are some of the pictures from the great news segment! Please check out the link on the sidebar and see the whole (short) video!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Annunciation, 2013

For this solemnity of the Annunciation, we are happy to bring you some selections from Sr. Bernadette Marie's sermon at Solemn Chapter yesterday morning. 

It can be said that our Blessed Mother's faith is the result of her complete and total trust in God's never failing love for her and for all humanity; thus her loving surrender to God's will in all circumstances. Consider Mary's faith at the moment of the Annunciation. She knew that because of God's love for man, He would send a redeemer, and when the Archangel Gabriel told her that she had been chosen to give birth to this redeemer, her loving response was a "yes"--not only to the joys of bringing light into a darkened world. Her "yes" was also a "yes" to the suffering which she knew would come, and which she would unite to that of her Son's. Consider her faith when she saw the suffering on St. Joseph's face once he noticed the as yet unexplained pregnancy. Consider her faith when she learned that she was going to have to travel a long and arduous journey to Bethlehem while pregnant with out Lord, and her humble submission to God's will once they got there, because our Lord would be born in a cold and dirty cave. On all these occasions, she never doubted God's love for her, therefore she was always serene, always at peace. She never doubted because she knew she was being guided by the powerful hands of a loving Father in all the events of her life...

Blessed John Paul II, speaking at a General Audience at the Vatican, said this of our Blessed Mother: "Hers was a daring faith...[because] at the Annunciation, she believed in what was humanly impossible...Mary teaches Christians to live their faith as a demanding and engaging journey, which, in every age and situation of life, requires courage and constant perseverance." This daring and courage of which Blessed John Paul II speaks, requires a total surrender in faith on our part. We m ust always remember that we are loved by God, so there is nothing to fear. 

Like Mary, our Blessed Mother, may our faith in this love never waver. She knew in her heart what St. Paul wrote years later in his letter to the Romans: "in everything God works for good with those who love Him."

Sunday, April 7, 2013

An Update from St. Valentine's Day...and the Generator Too

You may remember that on St. Valentine's Day we featured a picture of two doves who had built a nest above our carport. Well, the babies that hatched in that nest are almost grown up now! We found them enjoying a respite from the wind between the wall of our main building and our new generator! 

The doves still have some of their "baby feathers" but they are growing fast!

They were not too afraid of us (as you can see) and seemed to like this space...perhaps the site of a nest someday? 

As you can also see, our generator plans are really coming along! We thank everyone who has been so generous in supporting us in this endeavor. We will bring you more generator news in the weeks to come!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Spring 2013 Newsletter Available

We're happy to announce that the Spring 2013 issue of "Monastery Bells" is available on our website! Just go to and click on Newsletters, then scroll down till you reach it! It has a lot of interesting articles that have not been on the blog, so check it out! And as always, if you would like to receive "Monastery Bells" by mail (U.S. residents only--sorry, we can't afford foreign postage) please contact us here. When you subscribe through the mail, you will also receive our May and November novena slips, Christmas cards, pocket calendars, raffle tickets and other surprises. It's absolutely free! But if you prefer to read online, remember you can always send in petitions for our novenas, and enter our raffles. We'll post information on how to do this at the proper time. Either way, we hope you'll continue to keep up with us here at the Monastery of the Infant Jesus in Lufkin, TX. Thanks for all your generosity to us and know that we keep you all in our prayers!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Raffle Drawing 2013

Last night we had our raffle drawing! Thanks so much to all who participated. We are so grateful for your support!

We used a more conventional means of shaking up our tickets this year--a large Cavanaugh host box! Sr. Mary Rose shakes vigorously while our special "surprise" prize looks on.

Our prioress, Sr. Mary John, drew the first winning ticket.

 Sr. Mary Dominic drew another winner!

And Sr. Mary Christine drew a ticket, too! In all there were six great prizes.

Congratulations to all our winners! May God bless you abundantly for your generosity! We hope you will enjoy your prizes. And of course we keep everyone who entered in our prayers. Thank you again!

Blessed Easter 2013

We were having some computer trouble but now we want to say....

Blessed Easter to all!
Christ is risen! He is risen, indeed!