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Sister Maria Huber Makes First Monastic Profession
Lt. to Rt.: Sister Agatha Muggli, Sister Maria Huber, Sister Nicole Kunze (prioress) and Sister Susan Lardy
Congratulations, Sister Maria! Today, on the Transfiguration of the Lord, Maria Huber, made her first monastic profession during evening prayer. Sister Maria, may the love of God, your monastic community, family and friends, surround you and guide you as you say "Yes" to God's call in your life. God bless you, always.
Reflection – First Monastic Profession of Maria Huber
Sister Nicole Kunze, Prioress
August 6, 2017
Maria, we, your monastic community, are overjoyed to share this day with you. Your family and friends who have supported you all along this way are happy to be here and celebrate with you and us.
Today you make your commitment to the monastic way of life as it is lived in this community. To get to this day, you had to go through a period of trials, otherwise known as the canonical novitiate. During the novitiate, you were immersed in our way of life and completed classes on a variety of topics, including the Liturgy of the Hours, Benedictine History, and the Rule of Saint Benedict. The verse on your profession invitation, Listen with the ear of your heart, comes from the first verse of the Prologue of the Rule. I’d like to explore the deeper meanings behind some key words in the verse and how we’ve seen them in you, Maria.
Listen is the first word of the Rule. Benedict calls his followers to pay attention and attend to the important things in life. Paying attention or being observant is a great skill you have, Maria. You quickly notice when the Bible isn’t out for the reader at prayers, an older sister needs a refill of coffee, or when it’s our small group’s turn to serve sack supper. I believe the word “listen” also asks us to be open to whatever we may be called to do. You have displayed that trait of openness, especially when faced with something that doesn’t turn out the way you expected or hoped. Life in a monastic community will have those moments and your willingness to face those moments and understand what is being asked of you will be helpful.
The ear of the heart is where one encounters God. That happens for us Benedictines in our community prayer, our practice of lectio, and our community life with each other. For you, Maria, I believe you also encounter God in your relationships. It is hard to go anywhere in Bismarck where you don’t know someone. It is obvious that relationships with friends and family are important to you. You are very generous and that is a trait that will serve you well throughout your monastic life.
As part of her novitiate, I had the pleasure of having several classes with Maria where we discussed the threefold promise made at profession – stability, fidelity to the monastic way of life, and obedience. Maria, I know you understand what you are promising, but to help your family, let me briefly describe them.
Through stability, we Benedictines commit ourselves to this group of women in this community. It means we promise to continue to grow where we are and are willing to be changed.
By the promise of fidelity to the monastic way of life we commit ourselves to a continual transformation made possible through God’s grace. We live this life of prayer, community, hospitality and service while growing with each other.
And it is through obedience that we are able to listen to what God speaks to us. We listen with the ear of our heart to the prioress, to one another in community and to all others we encounter. Through prayer and scripture God reveals his will to us. And we are able to respond because we believe and trust in God’s love for us and we have one another to support us in our journey.
Maria, thank you for your response to God’s call. We promise to support you throughout your life here with us. Together we seek God and encounter God in the ordinariness of our daily lives. May we prefer nothing whatever to Christ, and may he bring us all together to everlasting life.