With great joy Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity celebrated the Rite of Initiation into the Religious Life on June 13, 2020 welcoming Novice Sister Mary Jane into our Community’s Novitiate. Sister Mary Jane’s home parish is Sacred Heart of Jesus, L’Anse, Michigan. Today she begins a two year experience in an atmosphere of solitude and recollection. Growing in her personal relationship with Christ under the title of Daughter of the Church, she’ll become acquainted with the essential aspects of her call to religious life and will be tested in her resolve and fitness. Community Director Sister Natalie Binversie welcomed the new Novice with these words.
Sister Mary Jane, welcome to the Community of the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity. You asked for the name Sister Mary Jane because it was your grandmother’s name and you wanted to honor her and thank her for being there for you in your growing up years. Believing in the Communion of Saints, your Grandma is interceding for you from heaven. You also have love for praying the Rosary, including the whole world in your prayer. You chose October 7th, the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, as your Feastday.
Sister Mary Jane, you chose “Daughter of the Church” as your title, which will be celebrated on the Feast of St. Joseph, March 19th. You see the Church as a place of sanctuary. It is not a mere building, but people. The Church shares in the love of Jesus and His everlasting grace and mercy that spills out in the Liturgy and the Sacraments. The most beautiful gift of the Church is that it is for all people. There is no exclusion. Jesus is waiting for the whole world with the doors wide open to receive them.
In your letter to me dated March 12, 2020, you wrote that you desired to enter the Novitiate because you believed God wanted you to dedicate your life totally to Him and to spread His love to all people in this Community. You have been blessed in your life to know the amazing power of love and family support. You wish to continue to grow and be open to sharing this gift with those who are most in need. Jesus is the steady vine and each of us is a branch from which His love can bloom and grow. Plants need time to grow and mature. You are not on this journey alone. You have Community to support you.
Sister Mary Jane, the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity are filled with joy this day as we welcome you, our Sister into Community. We are committed to helping you learn our way of life, to follow Christ crucified and to live in chastity, poverty and obedience. As followers of St. Francis of Assisi, we make this journey with you, living out the Gospel way of life in the footsteps of Jesus. You are assured of the prayers and support of all of your Sisters!
Blessing of the New Novice
“Sister Mary Jane, may the Lord of peace make you perfect and holy; and may you be kept safe and blameless, spirit, soul and body, for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. God has called you and He will not fail you.”
(1 Thes. 5:23)