Women Religious Meet New Steubenville Bishop

Paul Keggington

October 29, 2012

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity serving at Christ Our Light Parish, Cambridge, OH, in the Diocese of Steubenville met newly ordained Bishop Jeffrey Monforton for the first time. Sister Carolee Vanness shares about the experience.

The newly ordained bishop of the Steubenville Diocese, Bishop Jeffrey Monforton, celebrated the Eucharist with all the women religious of the diocese at an October Sunday liturgy at Our Lady of Sorrows Motherhouse in Toronto, Ohio.

In his homily, he encouraged us to “allow Jesus’ loving gaze to penetrate your hearts, to invite you.”  He also commented that “you provide the witness to prayers.”  We are to pray “not that God will hear us, but that you and I will hear God.”

After Mass, a group picture was taken with the bishop.  Bishop Monforton graciously honored our request to have his picture taken with the four of us from Cambridge.

End Note: During this month of October, it seems appropriate to close with an adapted version of  Third Order Franciscan St. Therese of Lisieux’s prayer for priests (bishops!)

O Holy Father, may the torrents of love flowing from the sacred wounds of Your Divine Son bring forth priests like the beloved disciple John who stood at the foot of the Cross; priests: who as a pledge of your own most tender love will lovingly give your Divine Son to the souls of all.

May your priests be faithful guardians of your Church, as John was of Mary, whom he received into his house. Taught by this loving Mother who suffered so much on Calvary, may they display a mother’s care and thoughtfulness towards your children.

May they teach souls to enter into close union with you through Mary who, as the Gate of Heaven, is specially the guardian of the treasures of your Divine Heart.Give us priests who are on fire, and who are true children of Mary, priests who will give Jesus to souls with the same tenderness and care with which Mary carried the Little Child of Bethlehem.

Mother of sorrows and of love, out of compassion for your beloved Son, open in our hearts deep wells of love, so that we may console Him and give Him a generation of priests formed in your school and having all the tender thoughtfulness of your own spotless love.’

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