As you would suspect, our life revolves around prayer. And, that as Redemptoristines, we hold in a special place in our heart our Redemptorist Priests and Brothers and their various apostolic missions. So, there is no mystery there.
The mystery begins with the Title of Chapter I of our Constitution and Statutes which sets the theme for our life: We are called by the Father to be, in the Church and in the world of today, a living memorial of Christ the Redeemer. Const. 5 expands this thought of being a Living Memorial as …a constant Reminder of all that the Son accomplished for our salvation during His life on earth. It is in this way that the Redeemer is able today to accomplish His work of salvation in us and through us.
Constitution 44 describes how: At the heart of our life is the Liturgy of the Hours and Eucharist making the day and night holy in a perfect sacrifice of love and praise. The Sisters life of prayer, praise and intercession reaches out to embrace all the needs and intentions of the entire world into the heart of Father.
The apostolate of the Redemptorists is sustained by the contemplative life of the nuns, and the Redemptorist ministry gives incentive to the life of prayer to the Nuns who are themselves fully missionary. Const 13
But what do the Sisters do all day? Each sister brings her own unique self to our mission of prayer for the Church and the world. In charity, each offers her gifts to use in the service for her sisters and in union with Christ the Redeemer.
We live in the shadow of Mount Beacon in New York. On June 25, we celebrate our 8th anniversary of living with the Carmelites. We were welcomed with open arms to the Monastery of the Incarnation after our move from the property of Mount St. Alphonsus in Esopus. With the Carmelites we share liturgy, meals, household chores and recreation. We are enriched and nourished as we join in the celebration of each other’s feasts and special occasions, and share quiet times of retreat. The park-like setting of the monastery is perfect for contemplating the peaceful, wondrous beauty of God’s nature surrounding us.
Besides the regular household chores that everyone else in the world does, like taking out the garbage, recycling, laundry… A couple of Sisters are involved with the making of CSsR habits. Others plan liturgies for Mass and prayer throughout the day or, because of the pandemic, Morning Prayer with Communion. Sisters accompany folks on their life journey by spiritual direction and the apostolate of the pen (computer) writing letters, emails and Spreading the Good News of Salvation via our website. There you can see pictures of the Sisters, read reflections on our Homepage and Blog (Followers of the Wayfarer), learn about our foundress Blessed Maria Celeste Crostarosa, our history and Sisters’ Stories. You can ponder art and haiku and even do a brain teaser by solving the CryptoPrayer. You are welcome to leave a prayer request or learn how to donate to the community by your purchases on AmazonSmile. Take a look: rednunsny.org.
Nightly, we have a ‘holy hour:’ the news and Jeopardy! Like many of you, we follow the news and discuss and pray over what we can do personally and as contemplatives to heal the divisions of our country, world and church.
An important part of our life is to be able to relax with one another. It is an essential part of all life, it fosters growth, and peace of mind and heart which the contemplative life needs inorder to flourish. Many sisters have gardens and enjoy puttering among the blooms. Most enjoy walks around the property or bird/deer watching from their rooms. Scrabble, crossword and jigsaw puzzles are favorite activities, as is watching the occasional DVD.
All our life is lived with the mindfulness that we are part of something bigger than what is seen from the outside. Though hidden from sight, it is in our interaction with one another and with those we come in contact with that we witness to this new heaven and new earth by our faith, hope and charity in every aspect of our human and religious life. In the monastery we strive to become the Redeemer’s faithful images of Him who is our Beginning and our End, our Way and our Life. Const. 6
We recently mailed out our invitation to join us in prayer, from a distance, for our Novena in honor of Our Mother of Perpetual Help. We unite ourselves in prayer with the Blessed Virgin for all the special intentions we receive through return mail. Our Const. 16 encourages us to, …Like Mary and with Mary, strive to live in constant communion with Christ, who is the light of our faith, the strength of our charity and the source of our hope.
So, you see, the mystery mission of our contemplative life is entirely centered on being a living memory of the love of the Father manifest in Christ the Redeemer to the world in union with our brother Redemptorists. It is as simple, and profound, as that.