We celebrated today the Golden Jubilee of Religious Profession of our Sr.M.Lucida. Early in the morning, it was cloudy and misty. The rain seemed to be threatening to pour down at any time. We prayed for a good weather so that Sister will have a wonderful day with her families and friends who will still come from Germany. As the hours advanced, the morning got brighter and the sun shone in its full radiance. With blue sky and some white fluffy clouds on the horizon, the day was perfect. Her guests arrive a few hours earlier, with enough time to rest and recollect before the Eucharistic celebration at 10:30 a.m.
At 10:15 we gathered at the Holy Spirit corridor for the procession. Sister was already in front with Sister Superior and her assistant standing beside her. We took our places behind in two rows, ready to go in procession to the chapel. Then the hymn, “Ave Maris Stella,” was intoned and we sang it with joyful and solemn voices as we proceed.
Our small visitors’ chapel was full packed despite additional chairs. Fr. Brunner was the main celebrant concelebrated by Fr. Feldkemper both members of the Society fo the Divine Word (SVD). Father mentioned in his homily that the fact that we are here and we chose to stay is already a testimony of God’s existence. For if we do not go out and we do not go for home visits, and despite being locked up inside (with the key with us) what else can anyone think but that there must really be a God whom we chose to love and serve for the rest of our lives?
Together with Sister, we thank God for this great day. A Golden Jubilee is worth to be celebrated in all grandeur and solemnity because it is a celebration of God’s own faithful love to his bride. It is a celebration of gratitude to our Lord Jesus who has called Sister to follow him and to share in his own life and mission. At the same time, it is a celebration of thanksgiving on the part of his bride for he has deigned to choose her for his service.
We, too, celebrate with her because a Jubilee is a great manifestation of God’s own fidelity to us more than our fidelity to him. The initiative is always his. His love enables us to respond to his call every single day of our religious life. He is the reason why we are in the cloister. He is the reason why we keep going. He is the reason why we choose to stay and the reason for our hope that we shall be united with him for all eternity.
As Sister renewed her vows, we, too, renewed ours in silence. Every time we have a celebration like this, every time I renew my vows with the celebrating sister, I can’t help but be moved by it. Ah, how awesome and good is our God! Surely each of us is filled with gratitude for the gift of our holy vocation. At the end of this beautiful day, we all felt renewed and encouraged to go on and to keep following our Lord even in the midst of the trials and challenges that we meet in the course of the day.
For the older ones who have already passed through their Golden Jubilee and for the rest of us who hope to reach it one day, we say a “Deo Gratias!” Yes, how good and wonderful it is to love and serve our God!