Associate Commitment

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On September 16, 2020, in Holy Names Chapel at St. Mary’s Academy, candidates Nicole Boudreau, Anita Cohen, and Adele Kory made their first commitment as Associates.

The service was planned in detail by Kitty Kelly and Sr. Marylyn Gibney. In addition to the candidates and the Associate Leadership Team, attending the ceremony were Sr. Lorraine St-Hilaire, Provincial, and Sr. Johanna Jonker, who accompanied Adele. Nancy Brennan, Associate candidate, was invited and attended as she has begun the journey to commitment and will continue with us.

Front row: L-r Nicole Boudreau, Anita Cohen, Adele Kory. Middle row: Christine Butterill. Back row: L-r Jean Van Walleghem, Gina Hoe, Kitty Kelly, Sr. Marylyn Gibney. Photographer: Mary Morton

The Ancestral candle was lit by Kitty. The Opening Prayer to Marie-Rose Durocher was read by Sr. Marylyn. The candidates were called upon by Sr. Marylyn to respond to the call. They all spoke from the heart about their faith journey and their contact with a member of the SNJM community. The Sisters and Associates are blessed to receive new Associates with this great faith, understanding, kindness and generosity to the people of our community and the whole world.  We will be able to continue the mission to serve others and live the charism of Mother Marie-Rose.

The candidates were introduced to our community by Associates and Sisters. Deanne McDonald spoke with Nicole at the Immaculate Conception Drop-in Centre at which they both regularly volunteer. Kitty met Anita at St. John Brebeuf Church when Kitty was presenting the “Come and See” brochure to all parishioners attending Sunday Mass. Adele told us that when she was teaching in Iqaluit she met Sr. Edith Grenier. She continued to want to be involved with SNJM and met Sr. Johanna Jonker at Micah House.

L-r Nicole, Anita and Adele

Chris’ reading from Isaiah 55:6-11, was followed by a time of quiet reflection. Holding their candles the candidates listened to Sr Lorraine as she asked “Do you wish to make your commitment?” They answered I do and the commitment prayer was said together. Then each one signed a contract “to promise to live the charism of the Congregation, to embrace the Acts of the General Chapters that touch the lives of the Associates, to deepen my personal relationship with God and to serve others in whatever capacity I am called”.  They were presented with the SNJM Associates pin.

As we all held our hands over them, Kitty read the Blessing of New Associates and roses were presented to them by Jean, Chris and Sr. Johanna.  The Associates renewed their commitment together, followed by the Sisters renewal of their vows. Mary Morton played the organ and sang the most beautiful Magnificat, Canticle of Mary.  We then prayed a closing prayer and gathered on the 3rd floor for cookies and grapes, all wrapped individually for safety.

Adele and Sr. Johanna

Jean and Chris demonstrating the new normal.

To conclude, it was not our usual celebration; we missed Despins Chapel with all the Sisters and many more guests and Associates present for commitment and renewal on October 6, 2020 Feast of Mother Marie-Rose. We will remember this service as a beautiful evening of being one in the spirit and one with each other as members of the SNJM Community.

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by Jean Van Walleghem