A New Postulant!

Theresa receives the postulant crucifix from Mother John Mary while Sr. Mary Veronica, the novice mistress, looks on.

On October 20, 2018, feast of our holy founder, St. Paul of the Cross, our aspirant, Theresa, had the great joy of being received into the next step of formation: Postulancy! Here is the beautiful reflection Mother John Mary gave us during our solemn celebration of Midmorning Prayer, when Theresa received the postulant crucifix and officially entered our monastic community to begin this new stage of her her journey in the love of Jesus Crucified.

Superior’s Exhortation for Theresa’s Entrance to the Monastery

Today is the holy Feast of our Father and Founder, St. Paul of the Cross. Theresa, today, you end the phase, the loooong phase, of the aspirancy program with the nuns of St. Joseph Monastery.  All of us, your Sisters in Christ (& our guests) welcome you with open arms as you officially enter the monastery. Now begins your postulancy. The etymology of the word means “to ask or demand, to solicit”. Be assured of our prayers for you as you ask or demand, of Sr. Mary Veronica to show you the way…the contemplative way to become a Passionist.

You have entered a Passionist monastery – that you may learn what St. Paul the Apostle wrote to those rowdy Corinthians about 57 AD, and our Founder would echo to you today in 2018, “learn how to live no longer for yourself but for him who died for you and was raised up” (2 Cor. 5:15)

Jesus has asked you, wooed you, invited you to live for him, to be plunged into the Paschal Mystery, that Paschal Consecration you underwent in Baptism and is renewed each day in the Mass. …to live, breathe, be immersed in His Passion, Death and Resurrection, to be transformed into Christ and to bring a train of souls with you. 

As you learn to live less and less for yourself…the same graces of self-forgetfulness will bring other souls to open themselves to the font of love and mercy flowing from the Pierced Heart of Jesus Crucified. That many people, not only your loved ones, but all humanity may come to know, trust and love the one “who died for them” defeating pain and death, “and was raised up,” inviting them to be “raised up” too, and to seek the things above, God, the Ultimate Lover, our Ultimate Goal .

Theresa, today we welcome you to our

  • Paschal life

  • Liturgical life

  • Communal life

  • Solitary life

  • Penitential life

  • Eucharistic life

  • Marian life

  • Paulacrucian life

Theresa, all these aspects of our life, and there are many more, can be summed up in this quote from the Catechism [of the Catholic Church] on the Liturgy - # 1083  “the Church never ceases to present to the Father the offering of his own gifts and to beg him to send the Holy Spirit upon that offering, upon herself, upon the faithful, and upon the whole world, so that through communion in the death and resurrection of Christ the Priest, and by the power of the Spirit, these divine blessings will bring forth the fruits of life”.

Theresa, Each of us here joyfully asks you to take this next step on the journey with your customary joy and enthusiasm. We ask you to ask Sr. Mary Veronica to teach you how to no longer live for yourself but for Christ, to make of yourself an offering that the blessings of the Paschal Mystery may bring forth fruits of life to the whole world…so in need of the Mystery of Salvation. We, your sisters, walk with you as you discover God’s unfolding plan which we hope will culminate one day in the perpetual gift of yourself as a Bride of Jesus Crucified, and Glorified.

And now I give you this postulant crucifix as a holy reminder of the Mystery of the One who has loved, saved you, called you, and now asks you to be with Him and us on Calvary. You may come forward now to receive this image of Undying Love.