Begin the Eve of Corpus Christi with Special Profession Blessing

by Sister Julie Ann on June 5, 2010

Franciscan Sister Chiara before Blessing of Habit and Veil

On the eve of her first profession, Sister Chiara LaValley carries her habit and veil at special blessing.

June 6, 2010 is the feast of Corpus Christi, a real solemnity in our Catholic Church. June 6 also marks the date of Sister Chiara LaValley’s first profession as a Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity. Tonight,  the eve before Sister Chiara’s profession, Franciscan Sisters gathered in St. Mary’s Chapel for a special ‘Blessing of the Habit and Veil’. 

Our Franciscan clothing blessing takes place within Evening Prayer. The ritual symbolizes a professed Sister’s dedication to Christ and her purpose-to accept the responsibilities of a consecrated Catholic women religious. In the opening rite, a novice is first questioned on what she desires. After responding that she is thankful for the grace of her Novitiate and asking for prayers from all community members for her perseverence in God’s service, she carrys her profession habit and veil walking behind the Motherhouse chaplain, while  following a processional  crucifix and a lighted candle held by professed Sisters.

Tonight, Father Finian Zaucha, OFM, our current chaplain, after reaching the front of chapel reminded Sister Chiara:

To serve God in the religious state means to die to one’s self and to live for God alone. It is a great privilege which God in His infinite love has bestowed upon you by calling you to religious life.

But, great as this calling may be, you should not venture to make your commitment of religious profession without firm conviction that you are called to do so by God and that you may respond sincerely and freely as Mary did.

 Watch for further coverage of Sister Chiara’s profession day.

4 thoughts on “Begin the Eve of Corpus Christi with Special Profession Blessing”

  1. sisterannemarielom says:

    Thank you for posting this ritual. Sister Chiara has been an example of joy and generosity to me!

  2. Sister Chiara is following behind Father Finian…this is no mistake or oversight. This particular procession order will be repeated at the time of Sister Chiara's funeral when her body in our Catholic funeral liturgy procession follows the presider. The ritual mirrors a death of another kind and one of life in Christ so dear to the rich symbolism of baptism.

  3. Postulant Marie says:

    It was an honor to be part of the special event on the eve of Sr. Chiara's first profession. In school we did a presentation of a ceremony of final vows. I didn't know that the veil and clothes were blessed on the eve of first vows. I learn something new here all the time!

  4. God willing, Marie, we will be there as you walk in procession for the Blessing of the Habit and Veil at the appointed time. May each day bring the opportunity to grow in knowlege and love of God.

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