SOLT sisters profess perpetual vows

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SOLT Sister Alison Marie of Abba Father and Sister Maria de Jesucristo Crucificado lay prostrate at the foot of the altar during the Rite of Religious Profession Sept. 12. The sisters, who work at Most Holy Trinity School, professed their final vows at the parish where students and alumni formed the choir. (Ambria Hammel/THE CATHOLIC SUN)

Two sisters working at Most Holy Trinity School dedicated their entire lives to the mission of the Church Sept. 12.

Sr. Maria de Jesucristo Crucificado and Sr. Alison Marie of Abba Father made their profession of perpetual vows to the Society of Our Lady of the Most holy Trinity at the parish. They’re among five SOLT sisters serving the school and two SOLT priests leading the parish.

“Deep in the soul of humanity, there’s an understanding of sacrifice,” Fr. Anthony Anderson, SOLT, said during the homily.

Sr. Maria, who is a preschool aide and Sr. Alison, who teaches third grade religion and sacramental preparation, completed an eight-year formal discernment process in order to take their final vows. They’ve been renewing their vows of poverty, chastity and obedience for the last five years. At the foot of the altar, they consecrated their entire being to Jesus.

“They’re not giving their lives to the Lord because they couldn’t find a real job or because they couldn’t find a husband,” Fr. Anderson said, before later affirming, “You have chosen the most exciting job on the planet, which is saving souls. And you have chosen the most handsome husband… who will be the most faithful.”

SOLT Father Zachary of the Mother of God, general councilor, who will also address the crowd gathered for Arizona’s Rosary Celebration in Phoenix next month, presided over the vow ceremony. Fr. James Flanagan founded the Society of Our Lady in 1958.

The sisters, dressed in their bluish-gray garments, renewed their baptismal vows and dedicated their allegiance to the SOLT constitutions. They prostrated themselves in front of the altar during a litany of the saints. Nearly 30 school children led the crowd from the choir.

In turn and with microphone in hand, the sisters read their vows and received two symbols: the medal of Our Lady and scapular. They will wear it under the habit. They also received a scapular with a triune symbol across the chest. It symbolizes their new role as daughter of the Father, Mother of the Son and Spouse of the Spirit.

In a brief note on the back of the worship aid, Sisters Maria and Alison thanked the trinity and the Blessed Mother for their formation and tender, constant care.

“With deep gratitude we thank our families who are Gods first gift to us and our first image of His Divine Life,” they wrote.

Earlier that day, another set of local Catholic school children witnessed the final vows for religious life. Sr. Lindena Brace re-affirmed the final vows she made in August with the Sisters of Charity of Seton Hill in front of Our Lady of Perpetual Help students.

Sr. Lindena teaches second grade at the Scottsdale school and, at 39, is the youngest sister in the order. Like the SOLT sisters, Sr. Lindena signed a vow card during the special Mass in August. She now wears a silver ring marked with three crosses as an outer sign of her vows.

“She loves children and she loves our senior sisters,” said Sr. Marian Grace Brandt, who retired as OLPH principal in 2010.

There are currently seven sisters living in the Scottsdale convent.

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