A Jubilee is an event that comes around quite often in a community, but it marks more particularly the jubilarians themselves. This year’s jubilee has been really special.
On May 12th, the Vice-Province of Moncton celebrated the sixty years of religious profession of Jeannine Leclerc and the seventy years of Rita Poirier. At the same time, we highlighted the fifty-five years of religious life of Rose-Marie Audet, Jeanette Cormier and Jacqueline Desroches.
After a time of reflection, the preparation of the feast was carried out in the utmost discretion, giving free rein to the imagination of the most curious and interested among us. On the morning of May 12th, we all assembled for the solemn celebration of the Eucharist.
The highlight of the day
To help our aging voices, the Sisters who prepared this Mass had provided a diskette of well-known, joyful as well as inspiring hymns, to make this celebration the highlight of the day. In his homily, Father Ulysse LeBlanc, CSC, helped us to reflect on our years in community, to give thanks for the journey that has been ours and to look to the future with confidence and surrender to our God who keeps gratifying us with his kindness and unconditional love. This celebration ended with a moment of deep reflection on the hymn : ”Mon Dieu, tu es grand; tu es beau’‘ along with a magnificent video.
A festive meal
Then Jeanne Comeau, our Vice-Provincial, invited us to go up to the 3rd floor of our residence where well-decorated tables awaited us in our two common rooms. It was 11:00 am, time for the aperitif which we enjoyed while gathering in small groups in one or other of our Sisters’ apartments. Meanwhile, the casual cooks, real ”cordons bleus”, put the finishing touch to one of those delicious Acadian meals, with a choice of chicken or seafood. Around noon, we took place at table while the preparation team provided the service. It felt like being in a four-star restaurant! We could gladly have said with Mother Marie de Saint-Charles: ”What can a community not accomplish when all its members are united in seeking God” (See RL, p.28).
As a re-reading of the event
When the meal was over, we all got together to put things back in place: chairs, tables, dishes, etc. Then we gathered for what used to be called ” general recreation ” for the rest of the afternoon. It is then that the comments relating to the celebration we had just experienced came from everyone present. All these observations conveyed similar feelings: wonder at the organization and unfolding of the feast, deep gratitude to the preparation team and unanimous agreement to continue this kind of celebration of the jubilees in the years to come.
Rita Poirier, fj, Moncton, Canada