A reflection by Mother Maria-Michael Newe, OSB, given to the community on the day before Sister Assunta made her solemn monastic profession, highlighting her profession motto: “Ecce, venio” – “Behold, I come”
Tomorrow, on the Feast of Saint Mary Magdalene, our Sister Assunta will make her solemn monastic vows. It is fitting to claim that Saint Mary Magdalene has the characteristics of a true Benedictine (even though Benedict had not yet arrived on earth during her lifetime!). She clearly has the spirit that Benedict valued in his monks, to “prefer nothing to the love of Christ” (Rule of St. Benedict, 4.21). It’s as if she cried out in her heart, “Ecce, venio” – “Behold, I come” – when she was one of the only disciples, except for John, present for Christ’s crucifixion, when she prepared the spices for His burial, and when she searched for her Beloved at His empty tomb. The Song of Songs can be applied to her when it says, “Have you seen him whom my soul loves?” (Song 3:3). She had that earnest searching of the heart, that earnest desire to be with Christ. Saint Mary Magdalene is outstandingly known for her unquestionable love for Christ, and His great love for her. Similarly, Sister Assunta is about to profess her monastic vows to become more like the One she loves, to embrace more fully the One she seeks above all, the One who has laid down His life for her and says, “Ecce, venio,” – “Behold, I come.”
Dear Sister Assunta, tomorrow a gold ring will be placed on your finger. And this is what will be said by the Archbishop to you: “Receive the ring of faith, the seal of the Holy Spirit, that you may be called the spouse of God. You are betrothed to Jesus Christ, the Son of the Most High Father. May He keep you undefiled in his love. Serve Him faithfully, that you may one day be crowned eternally. In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Look often at your ring, and remember well to Whom you are wed. Love Him without ceasing, as Mary Magdalene did. That is our prayer for you. Keep your eyes on eternity. Life is short, but you will never regret what you do if you love Christ most of all. We can wish you nothing better.
Our Sister Assunta, OSB, professed her solemn monastic vows on July 22, 2023. Adding to the already glorious occasion of the Feast of Saint Mary Magdalene, Sister Assunta’s profession day was a truly blessed and joyous one, and we were happy that so many of her family members from Texas were able to join us for the celebration. Below are some of the photos of Sister Assunta’s profession.
Photos by Ellie Lempe