“I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, and my soul shall be joyful in my God: for He hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, and with the robe of justice He hath covered me, as a bride adorned with her jewels.” (Isaias 61:10)
The opening words for the Introit of the Mass of the Immaculate Conception set the tone for one of the greatest feasts in the liturgical year… and, for a series of historic events here at Saint Benedict Center on that day.
A full chapel witnessed the First Profession of Sister Gabriel Marie, formerly known in the world as Clare Trimble, at the Offertory of the Mass, and watched as a beautiful young bride vowed herself to the Eternal Bridegroom, exchanging the bridal gown and veil for the “garments of salvation” – the habit of the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The moving ceremony climaxed at the awesome promise of Christ spoken through the priest after the signing of the Vows, when he said: “…and I, on the part of God, if you keep these vows, promise you Eternal Life.”
Soon after, Sister Mary Imelda stood at the foot of the Altar and pronounced her Final Vows as a Slave of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The veil and crown of white roses, symbolic of a Bride of Christ were blessed and given to her, completing her journey to Final Profession.
When the Sisters returned in the solemn black of the full habit, the Holy Sacrifice continued. At the end of the Mass, yet another religious ceremony was witnessed, as Ben Orbeck, a native of Minnesota, was received as a postulant of the Brothers, Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Please pray for Ben as he now begins his six months of serious discernment!
Afterwards, there was cake in celebration, and an afternoon reception for friends and family to mark the important event. The pure Queen of Heaven was surely smiling down on her little Chapel and monastery on that day! We thank her for all her blessings!