Pilgrimage Helpers, (l. to r.) Nene, Emily, and Greta

Our pilgrimage preparations this year were triply blessed by the presence of three young women, Greta, Emily, and Nene, who are discerning a vocation to our monastery. On Saturday, this terrific trio of Dominicans "in potentia," assisted sacristan, Sr. Judith Miryam, and, novice mistress, Sr. Mary Catharine, in the wide and dizzying range of preparations involved in setting up for the pilgrimage. Their joy, energy, and generosity were heartening to see!

On Saturday morning, the feast of St. Therese of Lisieux, we were up to our elbows in roses (something the "Little Flower" would have approved of!). Under the able instruction of Sr. Mary Catharine, Greta and Emily engaged in fine art of readying the pilgrim roses (which are blessed at the Holy Hour). The roses were de-thorned, their lower leaves removed and then the stem was cut. The intensive labor was lightened by a snack break of popcorn and soda.

Rose stem cutting requires concentration!

A smile for the camera nun!

Later in the afternoon, Nene arrived to join . Judith Miryam, and the gals in cleaning the chapel and sanctuary. Our two side altars (one of Our Lady of the Rosary with St. Dominic, the other of St. Joseph) were cleaned and given new altar cloths (yes, Greta, the ends are really even!).

Greta at St. Joseph's Altar

Stalls and kneelers were moved to faciliate the wet-mopping of the sanctuary floor and steps. The end results were gratifying, especially to Sister Sacristan! The Lord's House shone and sparkled! "How lovely is Your dwelling place, O Lord, God of Hosts!"

Emily moves the stalls and kneelers

Nene demonstrates her superior mopping
technique. Take special note of how the floor
is glowing!

Tomorrow: Decorating Our Lady's Sedia