One of the Christmas traditions in our monastery is Open House in the novitiate. Usually on Epiphany Sunday the novices host evening recreation for the professed sisters who aren't allowed up in the novitiate unless for classes or by invitation of the novice mistress.

Fred made sure to great each sister as she came to the Novitiate.

Each sister was met at the door by Sr. Joseph Maria who gave her a flower to give to the Infant Jesus who was laying at the foot of the community room Christmas tree.

Sr. Diana Marie smiles for the camera as she tries some of the refreshments. Sr. Mary Catharine's panforte nero is an annual treat!

Another tradition is the crowning of the "three kings", that is the 3 sisters who found the bean in her muffin at breakfast! This year, Sr. Maria Agnes, Sr. Mary Amata and Sr. Mary Jeremiah are our "kings". Later a Mass will be offered for their intentions.

We spent the rest of recreation "cutting lose" by singing Christmas carols, bot the sacred ones and the fun ones like Jingle Bells.

All too soon the bell rang for Compline and it was time to blow out the candles, clean up and say good-bye for another year.

Sr. Mary Catharine has a contemplative moment before the open house.