Solemn Profession of a Poor Clare

On Sunday 1 February 2015, Sr Martina Teresa of Our Lady Queen of Peace made her Solemn Profession at the Poor Clare Monastery in Arkley, Barnet.

The ceremony took place during Mass which was celebrated by Cardinal Vincent at the monastery and in the presence of her community, family and friends.

In the homily, Cardinal Vincent invited all present to 'listen to every word with your heart. Watch every action with the eyes of your minds. Let not a word, or a gesture, or an intention escape your grasp so that you may indeed feast on the riches of this ceremony for a long time to come.'

He encouraged everyone to 'be touched deeply by the radical clarity and truth of this moment: a truth about Sr Martina, but a truth about each one of us too.'

'This is truly a ceremony of the whole Church and for the whole Church', he continued, 'just as the life of this community, a hidden life perhaps, but a life of the whole Church and for the whole Church, a life on the main road of our human pilgrimage.'

During the Rite of Profession, Sr Martina asked 'the grace and mercy of God, to consecrate myself to Him' and promised to 'do penance, to amend my life, and, as a cloistered Sister in this Community, to serve God faithfully until death'.

During the Litany, Sr Martina lay prostrate whilst flowers were strewn on her to symbolise 'Franciscan "perfect joy" in total surrender'. 

Later, she placed her hands in those of the Abbess and made her Profession, vowing to live 'in obedience, without anything of my own and in chastity' and 'to observe enclosure'.

Sr Martina was then given a ring as a sign of her betrothal to the eternal King, and a crown of thorns which the Abbess placed on her head saying, 'May you deserve to be made a partaker of His Passion on earth and His glory in heaven.'

The full text of the Cardinal's homily can be read here

Additional photos of the Mass and ceremony can be found here.