By Sr. John-Mark Maria
Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration of Our Lady of Solitude
Today, we live in a noisy, mile-a-minute world. The idea of a cloistered community of contemplative nuns in the rural Arizona desert may be difficult for some of us to grasp at first. If you look a little closer, though, you’ll find a beautiful sanctuary where the commotion of daily life is replaced by a deliberate focus on Christ at the center of everything.
Before I joined the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration of Our Lady of Solitude nine years ago, I was called to serve the Lord through ministries at my local parish in Ohio.
I felt great joy in serving God, but my heart was not quite as full as it could have been. I sought guidance through prayer, and the Lord answered my pleas. In the quiet stillness of my heart, I felt Him inviting me to serve Him through the hidden, silent life of a cloistered nun.
Mother Marie of St. Clare once said: “We are adorers of the Most Blessed Sacrament, and the purpose of our Adoration is thanksgiving.” As a cloistered order, our ministry is to praise, adore and offer thanksgiving to our God through constant prayer. We pray for those who die each day, that they might have a beautiful, holy and peaceful death surrounded by their loved ones. We also pray for those who die a sudden or violent death and were not able to receive the Anointing of the Sick. We know our Lord is with them, and we entrust all souls every day with the hope that Christ’s death and Resurrection gives us.
“We pray for those who die each day, that they might have a beautiful, holy and peaceful death surrounded by their loved ones.”
As Poor Clares, we are perpetual adorers of God, which is our great gift to the world. We hold the hope of the world as a light on a lampstand for all to see. This devoted act is a reminder of Christ’s light, and we hope it provides comfort to those who are grieving and living in darkness. We pray for the Lord to bless them — and us all — with His Divine Mercy.
It is an exciting time for the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration of Our Lady of Solitude. As our fold grows, we have been blessed with the opportunity to build a new monastery where we can meet our goal of having 12 sisters worshipping in perpetual Adoration. We are grateful for the support of the Diocese of Phoenix as we work to fulfill our mission, and we welcome prayers from the community as we continue to expand our order in the desert.
May God bless you with the light and hope of Christ.
If you would like to learn more, please contact your parish or Catholic Cemeteries and Funeral Homes directly at (602) 267-3962.