There was great joy at St. Mary’s Abbey, Glencairn as we witnessed and celebrated the Solemn Monastic Profession of Sr. Angela Finegan on the feast of St. Bernard, 20th August 2018. The whole monastic community, together with Sr. Angela’s parents, family and friends gathered to witness the dedication of her life to God in the Cistercian way of life definitively. Mother Marie Fahy OCSO, Abbess of St. Mary’s Abbey, received Sr. Angela’s vows and Dom Richard Purcell, Abbot of Mount Melleray Abbey, presided, assuring her of all our support to her. In his homily he made frequent reference to the Rule of St. Benedict, our Gospel-centred source of wisdom and inspiration in our vowed commitment to the monastic way of life. Photographer Valerie O’Sullivan was also in attendance to capture moments to remember from this special day. The ceremony was followed by a festive dinner together with all our guests who joined us in our new monastery refectory.
Sr Angela is originally from Dublin and comes from a large family. She is a science graduate of UCD and worked in this field until she decided to change her career direction and worked with the homeless. Yet a further change in her life was to come when she saw an article in a newspaper about Glencairn Abbey and read about our Monastic Experience Weekends. After attending a weekend she wanted to explore further and came on subsequent visits to the Abbey to continue to discern her call from God, and entered the community as a Postulant in January, 2013.
In her Chapter Talk on the morning of Sr. Angela’s profession, Abbess, Mother Marie Fahy highlighted the significance of Angela’s life decision for others as she expressed the gratitude felt by all; ‘In a mysterious way the whole Church is enriched today by your commitment and the whole Church is in need of your prayer and self-offering. I thank you in the name of our community for giving yourself to us and to the Church. I pray with Our Lady and all the saints that you will continue along this path of conformity to Christ because your inner being has been stamped not only with a desire for God but with God’s desire for you, as he says to you: ‘Set me as a seal on your heart’.’ Song of Songs 8:6
We continue to pray for Angela as she goes forward that her dedication and fidelity to the monastic way of life in Glencairn may be a great grace both for her, her family, for the Church and for all people.
Our next Monastic Experience Weekend is coming up on 26-28 October 2018. If you are discerning your vocation and would like to experience monastic life for a weekend please contact Sr. Sarah for details at [email protected]