Profession Ring

July 31, 2017

Watering the Roots at the Wellsprings of Mercy » was the gift of the Sisters of Mercy, Newfoundland to me as an immediate preparation for my Final Profession of Vows.  I was thrilled to spend the whole month of July, 2012 in Catherine’s house on Baggot Street, to walk in her footsteps and breathe in her spirit.

Catherine was never closer to me than when I set out on my quest for the perfect profession ring. After much window shopping and inside browsing, Sister Maureen O’Keefe and I, on the advice of our new-found Irish friend, Sr. Mary McWeeney, found our way to Henry Street and the jewelry store of H. Samuel. Maybe the rest of the story is just pure coincidence but I like to think that the Divine Providence in which Catherine had such faith was also at work here.

You can stand on the sidewalk outside H.Samuel’s and look across to Mary Street at the building where Catherine had once lived with the Armstrongs! The manager of the jewelry store was delighted to prepare the profession ring for a Sister of Mercy of Newfoundland and the lady who assisted us had just spent a year at Memorial University in St. John’s!  Ofcourse the Spirit wouldn’t have anything to do with fact that my motto, “Here I am Lord” should be engraved by Samuel’s!;  Nor that my ring would be ready on the very day that our group had planned a visit to George’s Hill where Catherine and her companions made their profession as the first Sisters of Mercy.

Sr. Mary Kay Dobrovolny, Assistant Director of our program insisted that she drive us to pick up the ring on our way to George’s Hill. Needless to say there was great emotion all ‘round when my profession ring was placed on the altar at George’s Hill beside Catherine’s profession ring during the Ritual and prayer. (I learned that I am the only Sister of Mercy who has had that privilege!)   I felt Catherine’s presence very deeply when the words of blessing were pronounced over me and my ring and I prayed that I would always wear mine with the same love and fidelity that Catherine wore hers.

by Sister Marie Etheridge,rsm  St. John’s Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada