19 March 2008

Waters of New Birth

On the eve of the Sacred Triduum in which we commemorate the death and resurrection of Our Lord, we took our dear Sister Mary Stanislaus to her place of rest.
We share here a beautiful reflection written by one of our friends. Since it was such a rainy afternoon, most of us were too busy concentrating on staying dry while being a pall bearer or carrying a sacred object (or simply balancing an umbrella and negotiating a muddy hike) to take in the larger picture. Grateful for this beautiful reflection, we share it with our readers:

"In the lovely Mass of Christian Burial for Sister Stanislaus at Georgetown Visitation Monastery today, I was again reminded how St. Francis de Sales emphasized beauty as absolutely integral to the liturgy and the design of churches and chapels for his order. Perhaps even more profoundly afterward. In wind and in pouring rain a bishop and a prior, habited nuns with cross and lantern -- and their sister's body -- family and friends all climbed a hill, chanting the Good Thief's plea to Jesus. They lay Sister's body in an earthen grave. Holy water sprinkled, prayers upon prayers, a chant to Our Lady, and the coffin lowered by ropes. The whole celebration was gutsy and important -- made so by hallowed gestures, signs and symbols. De Sales understood the importance of beauty and its impact on prayer."

(Locals who wish to attend the Triduum, check back Thursday for our schedule.)

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