“And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself” (Jn 12:32)

We have been congregated under the name Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara in honor of the Lord and the Virgin carved on the Cross of Matara. The Triumph of the Cross, September 14, has thus become our main feast day.

Throughout the world, our sisters gathered on Monday to honor the mystery of the Crucified Lord who has redeemed the world by His Holy Cross. Here in our Province of the Immaculate Conception, Fr. Gustavo Nieto, IVE, presided over the Mass at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. At the Holy Mass in Guyana, many people from the different communities which the IVE priests and our sisters serve participated in the celebration of the Holy Cross.

During the ceremony in Washington, DC, some of our novices professed their first vows of poverty, chastity, obedience, and Marian slavery. Many sisters also renewed their temporal vows, and the perpetually professed sisters made a spiritual renewal of their total gift of self.

The formula for the profession of vows begins with the words that indicate the purpose of religious consecration: “For love.” The religious enters the convent not only “to pray and fast, to be obedient and to live in poverty for Jesus Christ” but also, and more importantly, “to fall in love with [her] Spouse Jesus Christ.” (Fr. Buela, “Spouses of Christ”)

Religious consecration benefits not only the one making the consecrating but also the Universal Church. “The consecrated life is not something isolated and marginal, but a reality which affects the whole Church… The consecrated life is at the very heart of the Church as a decisive element for her mission, since it ‘manifests the inner nature of the Christian calling’ and the striving of the Church as Bride toward union with her one Spouse.” (Servant of God Pope John Paul II, Vita Consecrata, 3)

“The profession of the evangelical counsels indisputably belongs to the life and holiness of the Church.” (VC, 29)

Please pray that these newly professed sisters remain faithful to their vows so that the Lord can make them into great missionaries for the Church according to the spirit of their religious profession: “I commit all my strength so as not to be evasive to the missionary adventure, in order to inculturate the Gospel in the diversity of all cultures, in order to prolong the Incarnation of the Word…” (Const., 254)