My Beloved Congregation (Hội Dòng Dấu Yêu Của Tôi)

        For several years I have been studying in the United States far from my convent in Vietnam. I miss my congregation and my beloved Sisters. As some of my Sisters studying abroad feel, we look forward to sharing our hearts in our prayers with our congregation on special occasions. We have been unable to attend several important and special congregational events, such as the celebration of our little Sisters entering the postulancy and novitiate, the celebration of my congregation’s birthday, and the big celebration of vows. Today, after an hour of adoration in the school chapel, I watched the livestream of the Mass of the profession of vows from our congregation’s website. It was such a pleasure to see my Sisters, to watch my Sister conduct the choir, to hear the beautiful voices of the Sisters in the convent choir, to see my talented pianist Sister play hymns, and to enjoy the exquisite decorations and formal arrangements in our congregation chapel. Seeing my new temporary professed Sisters and perpetually professed Sisters in procession side by side with their parents and siblings, as well as our older Sisters celebrating their 25th and 60th anniversaries made me very happy. Their Rosarian habits symbolically reflect their growing maturity in living their charism and spirituality in the practical events of daily life, to which they are now bravely committing themselves through the evangelical counsels.  It is wonderful to see these positive changes and signs of growth in my convent.

“It’s raining!” I exclaimed to myself, smiling, as I looked at the colorful umbrellas of the procession. During big celebrations, it might appear that the occurrence of rain is an annoyance. Maybe, it is impossible for the physical rain to keep guests and relatives from attending this special occasion to witness our profession of vows. Although rain may have some disadvantages for our guests and relatives who have come to celebrate with us, the raindrops end up symbolizing the love and devotion we all share. Our beautiful chapel was crowded with guests, including Bishop Thomas, priests on the formation team, pastors, Brothers, Sisters, relatives, and benefactors, all of them extending their love and support of our Sisters on our professional and spiritual journey.

Moreover, raindrops have become a visual representation of God’s grace falling on our congregation. Our congregation has regarded raindrops as charming and a good omen since it rained on the day our order was officially established on September 8, 1946. Today, September 9, 2022, before Mass began, it started to rain. Rain does not seem unusual and is even welcomed in our congregation at the Mass in which vows are professed. It is so lovely to have the ten Sisters who made their temporary profession, as well as the eleven Rosarian Sisters who had the courage to make lifetime vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience to the Constitution of the Daughters of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary of Bui Chu in order to serve God and His Church. It is also a blessing to have the presence of the seven Sisters who celebrate their 25th anniversary and four Sisters who celebrate their 60th anniversary of profession of vows. My Sisters’ consecrated journeys of twenty-five and sixty – years are pieces of evidence of God’s presence and love for my congregation. They are live witnesses inspiring our younger generations to live our congregation’s spirituality and charism.

I am filled with such joy that I cannot express it in words.  In prayer, I thank God for the presence of my congregation in the Church, as well as the presence of my sisters in spirit who are studying far from home. As the rain fell today, God’s grace was reflected in our congregation and in each of us.

O Lord and Mary may your grace continue to bless and guide our congregation in our consecrated life.

M.Đaminh Ninh Phạm Thị Nguyệt. FMSR

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