I PROMISE OBEDIENCE

On November 21, 1953, feast of the Presentation of Mary, our community made Solemn Profession for the 1st time. To mark this wonderful gift of God and of the Order, we have a three day retreat beforehand. Most often it is silent, i.e. without preached conferences.

Solemn Profession is itself a great gift of grace. St. Thomas Aquinas says that Solemn Profession is a “complete holocaust”. On this day in 1953 our monastery also received the gift of becoming full members of the Order—Nuns (moniales) of the Order of Preachers.

While the Dominican Family is a “ship very spacious, gladsome and fragrant” as the Father told St. Catherine of Siena, there are also certain distinctions within our Family. Only the Friars and the Nuns makes Profession to the Master of the Order and together form the Order of Preachers so called. The Dominican Laity also has a promise of obedience in their profession formula to the Master according to their state in life. However, no matter what branch one belongs to, we are ALL Dominicans!

This year November 21st is a Sunday and the Solemnity of Christ the King falls on this day and so the feast of the Presentation of Mary is superseded. However, by long tradition, November 21st is observed in the Church as “Pro Orantibus Day”—dedicated to the Cloistered Nuns of the World. Last year, the Holy Father expressed his "special closeness and that of the whole ecclesial community to these sisters of ours, whom the Lord has called to the contemplative life."

November 21st is also the anniversary of Solemn Profession of Sr. Mary Elizabeth of St. Joseph and the 1st Profession anniversary of Sr. Mary Catharine of Jesus.

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