On September 11, the eve of the day on which the Church commemorates the “Holy Name of Mary,” our Sister Mary was clothed with the Benedictine habit. What a glorious day it was!
Two days later, a wildfire broke out from lightning striking a bush on our neighbor’s land, and we spent the day preparing to evacuate. Thankfully, due to the amazing fire fighting squad (on foot and in the air), who worked tirelessly through the night, we were able to safely stay in our monastery. We were also blessed by many friends and oblates who reached out to check on us and let us know that we could stay with them if we needed to leave. Praise the Lord for surrounding us with so many good people!
It was a great gift that we did not have to evacuate, because Sister Assunta’s Vow Renewal was set to take place on the next day, September 14, The Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. After six years here, she has now renewed her vows for another year, bringing her one step closer to her Solemn Profession.
In honor of the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross celebrated this month, one of our Sisters wrote this reflection:
A Rock Beneath the Cross
You have said To plant in fertile ground With rich, nutritious soil, In order to take root And bear fruit; But then You go and Contradict Yourself, Because I’ve seen Trees growing out of rocks, For nothing is impossible For You… And it’s a good thing, too, Because I am like that rock, Stony, hard, unloving, Critical, rigid, cold, But still You give me hope That if I only keep saying, “I only want You, And to love like You,” Then You will accomplish A miracle in me, And a tree will grow From this rock… And I think of Moses Striking the rock, And water pouring forth, Just like You were struck By me on the Cross, And blood and water Poured out love and mercy Upon this very rock Who struck You… So there is hope For this heart of stone, Because beneath your Cross, Watered by Your blood, Anything is possible, And even a fruit-bearing tree Can grow.
I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.Ezekiel 36:26