February 2, the feast of the Purification, marked the end of the Christmas Season, but for postulant Nicholas Fretwell, it stood as the beginning of the next chapter in his religious life.

Having completed the required six months of postulancy, Nicholas became a novice of the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. He was given the habit of the Order, and received his new name, Brother Gerard, in honor of the humble Italian Redemptorist, Saint Gerard Majella.

Nicholas was raised in Pepperell, Massachusetts, and attended Immaculate Heart of Mary School. After graduating in 2015, he became a set-up machinist at New Hampshire Ball Bearings, Inc and finish woodworker on the side. He continued to be a regular attendee at the Latin Mass at Saint Benedict Center, and in August 2017, Nicholas entered the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary as a postulant.

Brother Gerard’s two year novitiate will be a time of more intense prayer and study in preparation for First Vows. Pray for his perseverance as he takes this important step in his religious life.

“Who except God can give you peace? Has the world ever been able to satisfy the heart?”  ~Saint Gerard Majella

Brother Gerard, Novice
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