In Pace

In peace I will lie down for sleep comes at once." Psalm 4

Saturday, the Solemnity of St. Joseph was a day of joy and sorrow. Sorrow, because we buried our Sr. Virginia Mary and joy because it was the feast of St. Joseph and we know that Sr. Virginia Mary has entered into Eternal Life. Should she still need that final cleaning and polishing up known to us as Purgatory we pray that St. Joseph intercede for her and bring her to Heaven quickly!

Fr. John Paul Walker, OP, who knew our Sister well, gave a beautiful homily reflecting on the Mass readings that Sr. Virginia Mary had chosen for her funeral (as well as the hymns!). It brought tears to many of us in the choir and in the chapel which was filled with the many people who knew Sr. Virginia Mary including our Rosary Shrine Guild which she was in charge of for many years.

Sr. Virginia Mary had asked Fr. Bruno Shah, OP, her spiritual son, to give the homily but previous commitments meant that Fr. Bruno wouldn't be able to arrive until later in the day. He was able to be present at the burial. We are so grateful to Fr. Bruno for his devoted concern for Sr. Virginia Mary, often coming out from New York City, despite his busy schedule to attend to her spiritual needs and simply to be with her. We are sure that she won't stop praying for him!

This seems an appropriate time to post the beautiful responsory that we Dominicans sing during Lent, the In Pace" which is a verse from Psalm 4. This is especially appropriate at the death of Sr. Virginia Mary as it is the prayer of the just man who goes to rest, secure in the Lord's protection.

The In Pace is sung in our monastery at Compline for Sunday and for the Solemnities of St. Joseph and the Annunication. The chantresses take turns singing the verse. Sr. Mary Catharine is the chantress is the following recording.

Dominican Fathers Peter Batts, Kieran Fergus and John Paul Walker distribute Holy Communion during the Funeral Mass for Sr. Virginia Mary

Fr. Bruno Shah, OP looks on during the final prayers before the burial.

"In peace, let us take our Sister to her rest."

The community and Sr. Virgina Mary's family at the burial service.