A wonderful gathering of Religious of the Assumption and family and friends of Sr Clare Bernadette gathered to celebrate her 50 years of religious life. Every single possible space in Maria Assumpta Chapel in Kensington was filled, with many people having travelled from Ireland and Scotland for this special occasion. Afterwards, a large marque in the grounds of Heythrop College provided an amazing space for people to catch up with old friends and make new ones.
Fr Roddy Johnston was the main celebrant and homilist. He is currently parish priest in Stornoway, and had known Sr Clare Bernadette during the many years she spent in community in Fort William. Fr Robin Gibbons and Fr Dominic Allen concelebrated.
During the mass Sr Clare Bernadette renewed her vows, into the hands of Sr Patricia, the provincial of the Religious of the Assumption in England.
The Heythrop schola, led by Martina Jelinkova, sang beautifully ; as Sr Clare Bernadette said in her note of thanks to them, "when we closed our eyes we thought we’d gone to heaven".
Joey Draycott, the organist at Maria Assumpta Chapel composed a beautiful Magnificat for the occasion, sung by the Heythrop Schola, which can be listened to below. I’m sure we will be hearing more of this very talented composer in years to come.
Another highlight of the service was the children’s choir - Sr Clare Bernadette’s great nieces and nephews, who sang ’Be still and know that I am God’ after communion. This can be listened to below, as can the spontaneous applause it was followed by !
Click to listen to
- The whole service
- Fr Roddy’s homily
- Sr Clare’s renewal of vows
- Magnificat, composed by Joey Draycott and sung by Heythrop Schola
- The children singing ’Be still for the presence of the Lord’