Final Profession in Visakhapatnam
October 12th - the long waited day of the Final Commitment of seven of our Sisters, Velangani, Mallika, Hema, Jessy Joseph, Vandana, Bonita and Regis dawned in all its splendour and glory.
There was an atmosphere of joy and gladness everywhere and on the faces of everyone. The Church was adorned with flowers and lights. All was resplendent for the Eucharistic celebration for which His Grace, Archbishop M. Prakash, was the chief celebrant. The large number of priests present concelebrated in the Mass. The Church was filled with Sisters, relatives of the Sisters, friends and well wishers. Just before the Mass, those who were to be professed, were introduced by one of the Provincial Councillors.
Mass began at 10.30 a.m. with a beautiful entrance hymn sung in Telugu, while the seven Sisters, accompanied by their family members, Sr. Vianney, Sr. Jeanne Marie their Junior Mistress, Priests and the Archbishop, walked in procession to the Altar. When they reached there, the traditional lamp was lit, invoking Christ the Light of the world. The welcome address was given by Sr. Regis.
Following the proclamation of the Gospel the Candidates for Perpetual Profession were examined by the Archbishop. He then gave an inspiring homily in his simple and yet profound manner, exhorting the Sisters to be faithful to Community life and to live radically, the Perpetual Vows they are about to pronounce, and to lead lives of witness.
Just before they pronounced their Vows, the Litany of the Saints was sung - imploring them to intercede for these seven Sisters who were going to commit themselves to God for the rest of their lives. The Vows were received by Rev. Sr. Vianney. During the Offertory, the Sisters offered symbolic gifts and prayers to the Lord. After Holy Communion, one of the Finally Professed Sisters proposed the vote of thanks. The melodious singing of St. Joseph’s choir - prepared for the event - added meaning to the Eucharistic celebration.
At the end of the Mass the Archbishop and all the Priests joined the newly Professed Sisters for a photograph. As they cut the cake, and sweetened their mouths, the choir sang the Congratulation song, after which everyone took part in the Agape.
We thank God for the gift of these seven Sisters to the Church and to our Congregation. We wish and pray that they live to the full, the theme chosen for their Final Profession ceremony, “Yesterday, Today, Forever.....To be a Messenger of Mercy....” and remain faithful to the Lord and to the Congregation. May St. Joseph and Fr. Medaille look kindly upon them.