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“Rejoice” Circular Letter Released to Prepare for Year of Consecrated Life

ppconfebraz310114A Circular Letter addressed to those in consecrated life and  permeated with the Pope’s Magisterium has been released by the Vatican. It opens with an enthusing declaration, “I want to say a word to you and the word is JOY. Wherever there are consecrated people, there is always joy!” The solid Biblical foundation of the Letter (Isaiah 66: 10-14 and 40: 1-2) is summarized in the key words:  Rejoice and Console. These words often return in moments of crisis, sadness, and sterility, to evoke God’s power of giving meaning and fullness of life, transforming a people of fragile bones, and opening new horizons of hope. God makes Jerusalem and all of us a joy, because when fear is removed, we can be a prophecy of joy and consolation for the world. The beauty of consecrated life lies here… it is the response to a call of love in the joy of a faithful yes. The text of this letter, written by Cardinal João Braz de Aviz  and Most Rev. José Rodríguez Carballo, O.F.M., can be found here. The Year for Consecrated Life officially begins on November 30, 2014, the first Sunday of Advent. Pope Francis has called for a special yearlong focus on consecrated life, asking the Church’s religious sisters, brothers and priests to “wake up the world” with their testimony of faith, holiness and hope. It will end on February 2, 2016, the World of Consecrated Life. Several special events in Rome will be scheduled:  a plenary assembly of the Congregation for Institutes of Religious Life and Societies of Apostolic Life is supposed to be held in November 2014;  an international conference on the theology of consecrated life will be organized on the theme:  “Renewal of Consecrated Life in Light of the Council and Future Prospects,” as well as an international exposition on “Consecrated Life, the Gospel in Human History.” During the Year of Consecrated Life, it is hoped that the Holy Father will promulgate a new apostolic constitution on contemplative life in place of Sponsa Christi, which was promulgated by Pope Pius XII in 1950.

New Postulant for Poor Clares in Phoenix

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On May 14th, Feast of St. Matthias, the Poor Clare Nuns of Perpetual Adoration in the Diocese of Phoenix had the great joy of welcoming a new postulant to their community.

Jennifer comes from the San Francisco area, where she worked as a Park Ranger.  The Poor Clares of Our Lady of Solitude Monastery were blessed to get to know her about two years ago, when she first began discerning with the community.  Earlier this year Jennifer completed a three- month live-in candidacy, and the community is happy now to welcome her back as a postulant.

Postulancy denotes a preliminary period before entering the novitiate phase of the formation process.

Please keep Jennifer and all young people discerning a possible vocation to the consecrated life in your prayers!

Click here to read the remainder of the article, as well as to see more photos.

Archbishop Sample Celebrates Pontifical Mass with Brigittine Monks

2014+Pontifical+Mass-36-3106456286-OOn Quinquagesima Sunday (the last Sunday before the Lenten season begins), Most Rev. Alexander Sample, Archbishop of Portland celebrated a Pontifical Mass at the Throne in the Extraordinary Form during a Gregorian Chant Conference at the Brigittine Monastery of Our Lady of Consolation in Amity, Oregon. Several priests and deacons of the Archdiocese and from the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter assisted at the altar, in other liturgical roles and in choir.

The Order of the Most Holy Savior (the “Brigittines”) was founded in 1370 by St. Bridget of Sweden, upon a direct revelation from Heaven, as an order of cloistered, contemplative monks and nuns, who follow the Rule of St. Augustine. With the vicissitudes of European history, the last Brigittine monk died in 1863. In 1976, the late Brother Benedict Kirby established a community of Brigittine monks which follows the charisms of Saint Bridget, and is now located in Oregon. Following the original pattern of monasticism, the monks do not ordinarily receive Holy Orders. The Priory has a special devotion toward the Sacred Liturgy, the Passion of Christ, the Eucharist, the Blessed Virgin Mary, the papacy, and praying for the souls in Purgatory and for the unity of Christians. The entire Liturgy of the Hours is sung.Bridgetine The community attempts to be self supporting through the manufacturing of gourmet confections. Each person feels the responsibility to contribute in whatever talents he has to offer or in the work to which he is assigned. Work is done at the monastery and we do not engage in types of work that may not be done within the enclosure. For more information visit here.

Celebrate National Catholic Sisters Week with “Lent at Ephesus” Music CD from Cloistered Benedictines of Mary

lent_at_ephesus__43094_zoomThe Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles enter the inaugural National Catholic Sisters Week with their third album, LENT AT EPHESUS, holding steady at the No. 1 spot on Billboard magazine’s Classical Traditional Music Chart for the third consecutive week. The Sisters’ second album, ANGELS AND SAINTS AT EPHESUS, also is thriving on the Billboard charts, earning the No. 2 spot on the Classical Traditional Music Chart, the No. 8 spot on the Contemporary Christian Chart and the No. 10 spot on the Christian Gospel Chart. The community is well known for producing beautiful music, and are one of the many orders being celebrated this week during National Catholic Sisters Week, which began March 8 at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minn., as part of Women’s History Month. The week recognizes sisters nationwide who have served faithfully as part of American history. “During this special National Catholic Sisters Week, we are so pleased by the outpouring of comments and affections expressed for LENT AT EPHESUS as brought to you by the prolific and faithful community of The Benedictines of Mary,” said Monica Fitzgibbons, co-founder of De Montfort Music. “Particularly heartening are the comments of those who have been enjoying the 12-page booklet, which accompanies the purchase of the CD or download, and serves to enhance the devotional aspects of this beautiful music by providing the lyrics and seasonal context for each heavenly song. We are so grateful to the Sisters for their monastic life honoring their Divine Spouse, and for sharing with us this deeply enriching artistic experience of Truth and Beauty.” For more information visit here.  
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Vatican Document
Apostolic Constitution Vultum Dei Quaerere on Woman's Contemplative Life
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Special Event
World Day of Cloistered Life - Pro Orantibus Day
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Free Audio Book
A Right to Be Merry By Mother Mary Francis, P.C.C.
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Terms
Glossary of Cloistered Life terms
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