Archdiocesan Formation Mass and Meeting
Today was the Archdiocese of Newark's Mass for Those in Formation in preparation for the Year of Consecrated Life (Nov 30, 2014- Feb 2, 2016). As the only cloistered monastery in the Archdiocese, the Mass and meeting that followed were held in our Chapel and lecture hall so that our sisters in formation would be able to attend.
At 9am Fr. Gabriel Mary of the Community of St. John said Mass with a lovely homily on the fecundity of consecrated life. Our sisters participated from inside our choir, but were given permission to go into the outside Chapel and Lecture Hall for the second half of the event. There was a photographer present from New Jersey Catholic the Archdiocese's magazine. In an upcoming issue there will be a picture of all those in formation in the Archdiocese, taken at this event.
About 15 men and women in formation attended the event, along with their formators. There were an equal number unable to attend. Besides our community, other institutes that participated were the Community of St John (both the male and female branch), the Salesians, Missionaries of Charity (a contemplative house), Caritas Sisters of Miyazaki, Korea, and the Benedictines from the Abbey of St Walburga.
After the photo shoot everyone headed down to St. Dominic's Hall to get to know one another a little before their meeting. Fr. Gabriel Mary gave a talk on the letter Rejoice! A Letter to Consecrated Men and Women and then there was a period for question & answer. The participants were asked about their experiences: what attracted them to their institute, what are you thankful for in formation, what gifts do they bring to the Church by being in their community? The participants shared their vocation stories and the charisms of their particular institutes.