While our hearts and prayers have been with our Brethren at the General Chapter and with our Holy Father and our young people (and not-so-young) at WYD, here at the monastery it has been an eventful week. The feast of St. Mary Magdalene is traditionally for our monastery the "Professed Feast". It's the day when the sisters in the novitiate cook and the professed relax. In reality the novitiate sisters have scheduled cook and helper days just like the professed sisters but the Professed Feast is an excuse to cook and bake all sorts of wonderful things! So many good things on one day!
This year, due to various schedules the feast day was transferred to Thursday, the feast of St. James. A feast in its own right! As you can see by the photo of the menu on the board the sisters worked hard! The cinnamon buns were so tasty! These are Sr. Mary Cecilia's specialty. Sr. Mary Magdalene and Sr. Mary Jacinta made corn dogs, grilled veggies and corn while Sr. Mary Veronica made a "baked potato" salad. For desert the sisters served Pavlova. What is that? It is a huge meringue-like cookie topped with (real) whipped cream and lot of fruit: blueberries, black berries, kiwifruit and peaches. The Pavlova, Sr. Mary Catharine assured the sisters, is very easy to make. However, someone forgot to take it off the parchment after it cooled. At 11:15 Sr. Mary Catharine whipped up the cream. The fruit was all ready, too. After various attempts to remove the "cookie" from the parchment sheet the sisters had a gooey, yummy mess of crumbs. So, out came the eggs, it was made again and put into the oven. The directions said to bake it for 1 hour and then let it cool completely in the oven. So, that a few hours, right? The sisters had about 40 minutes. NO ONE PANICKED!
Thanks to the convection oven the meringue was out in 30 minutes, cooled for 5, pushed onto a plate, the whipped cream was dumped on and spread, 5 nuns covered it with fruit and by the end of dinner graces it was on the table! We don't even have a photo to prove it! So, what were the professed doing? Sitting, talking, crocheting, talking some more. In the afternoon they watched some of the Holy Father at WYD but as usual, by the time the Holy Father got to the stage to begin talking the bell rang for Vespers. The sisters truly enjoyed the day and the novitiate sisters said that it wasn't stressful at all and they had fun, too! However, we are all happy that Friday followed and that it is a fast day!