Two Founding Nuns take their First Vows on the Feast of St. Scholastica
Alexandra Clark | The Daily Knight
It was on the wonderful feast of the twin sister of St. Benedict, that two foundresses professed their first vows with their great patron St. Scholastica, in Anno Domini Feb. 10, 2021.
Fr. Jean Baptiste Saint Jure, in his Treatise on Vows and Virtues, speaking on the profession of vows, brings to our mind what the vows are all about and what they should mean:
“He who has resolved to consecrate himself to God by the vows of religion, to bind and attach himself to Him by these three indissoluble ties, to be nailed to the cross of His divine Son, and to be crucified with Him by these three nails, to make this sacrifice of himself ; the greatest sacrifice that he could possibly make, since he immolates all that he has. And since it is the heart that ennobles and gives value to the gift, if we should give to God even the least thing with a generous heart, it is evident that it is more reasonable to give Him those of greater consequence in a like disposition. But as no one can give to God anything greater than that given by these vows, it is necessary to present Him this gift, in the sublimest and most perfect manner….You should offer yourself to God and make Him your vows with the same sentiments and the same affection with which the most holy Virgin made Him that of her virginity, and offered to Him her divine Son and herself in the temple, on the day of her purification, and also on Calvary: again, they should be rendered with the same sentiments with which Our Lord offered Himself on the cross, and from the time of His incarnation, when He made a vow to die. Thus should you join yourself to -them in these actions uniting your vows with theirs…..Thus, from the moment of His conception, Our Lord consecrated Himself to God by express and formal vow ; He made profession of a laborious and painful life : He promised to shed His blood and die for men, and for you in particular, arid to this end, He offered, by vow, all the actions and all the sufferings of His earthly career. The vows and the promises Our Lord made to God, says St. Jerome, are His birth, passion, death, and the institution of the Most Holy Sacrament of his Body. Thus, He vowed for you and for your imitation, poverty, chastity and obedience. He made a vow to be born in a stable, abandoned and rejected by all, to be circumcised with excessive pain to His delicate flesh, to fly to and live in Egypt with great inconvenience, to lead an unknown and laborious life, to be scourged, crowned with thorns, beaten, struck, outraged, and to yield up His last breath on a gibbet, in an abyss of all manner of grief and ignominy.” (Page 87)
With this in mind, these two foundress sisters of St. Joseph Monastery in Silver City, NM, Sister Mary Magdalene and Sister Mary Agnes, professed beautifully to become the spouses of Christ and prayed to offer their lives to Christ aloud in Latin:
“In the name of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen. In the year of Our Lord 2021, the 10th of February, I sister, N.N. promise for three years, stability, conversion of manners and obedience according to the Rule of our most Holy Father St. Benedict and the constitution of this Monastery of St. Joseph in Silver City, of the Cassinese Congregation of the primitive observance of the order of St. Benedict, before God and His saints, in the presence of the Most Reverend Bernard Fellay, auxiliary bishop of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X, and of Dom Cyprian Rodriguez, Prior of Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery.”
Though these vows are only temporary for 3 years, they do it with the heart and mind towards making it forever. After the sisters professed their vows they extended their arms in the form of a cross and sang three times: “Uphold me, O Lord according to Thy Word and I shall live and let me not be confounded in my expectation.”
His Excellency Bishop Bernard Fellay, then proceeded to exchange the sisters white veil for the new cream-colored veil, saying: “Receive the veil upon your head as a sign of chastity and obedience, may it be to thee an armor of salvation so that without wavering you may run the course of your probation. Amen.” At which the sisters chanted back: “I have despised the world and all its goods on account of the love of Our Lord Jesus Christ Whom I have seen, Whom I have loved, in Whom I have believed, Whom I have chosen.”
It was a day of great rejoicing for the entire Church as these two sisters have taken the step to be evermore united with Our Lord and in being united with Him, evermore pleading with Him for the salvation and conversion of souls. As St. Jerome says: “The choir of Religious and Virgins is assuredly among the ornaments and the rarities of the Church: a beautiful flower and a precious pearl, that give to her great beauty.”
The long-awaited traditional community of Benedictine Sisters who love the traditional Latin Mass and Divine Office is already increasing in strength and in number! St. Joseph’s Monastery is now up to a total of eight, with more pledging to join before the Winter of 2021. Pray for these sisters and feel free to send your prayer intention anytime by mailing them at: Sisters of St. Joseph Monastery 18 Cherokee Trail, Silver City, NM 88061.