Special Days of Prayer, Service, Community To Mark Year of Consecrated Life in United States

Catholics in the U.S. will mark the 2015 Year of Consecrated Life with special days to highlight prayer, service and community.

The observances were announced Oct. 1 at a media conference in Washington, D.C., led by Bishop Michael Burbidge of Raleigh, N.C. Bishop Burbidge heads the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations.

Advertisement

The U.S events are the national response to the Vatican-initiated yearlong celebration, set to begin the first weekend of Advent 2014, Nov. 29-30, and to conclude on Feb. 6, 2016, the World Day of Consecrated Life.

Representatives of women’s and men’s religious orders joined Bishop Burbidge at the media conference. They  included Father James Greenfield, an Oblate of St. Francis De Sales; Sister Marcia Allen, a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet, president-elect of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious; and Sister Marie Bernadette Thompson, a Nashville Dominican and Council Coordinator of the Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious.

Specific events in the planning include:

  • Feb. 8, 2015, open houses sponsored by religious orders to present background on the various religious communities in the U.S., receptions and family activities to acquaint contemporary society with religious life today.
  • Summer 2015, days of mission and service with religious men and women to invite people to join them in their apostolates or special service projects, such as assisting the elderly, ministering to the poor and homeless and other efforts to help those in need.
  • Sept. 13, 2015, day of prayer with religious. Events may include celebrations of Vespers or Evening Prayer, recitation of the rosary or holy hours of prayer in convents, monasteries, religious houses, parishes and churches.

The Year of Consecrated Life encompasses the observance of the 50th anniversary of“Perfectae Caritatis,” the Second Vatican Council Decree on the on the Adaptation and Renewal of Religious Life and “Lumen Gentium,” Vatican II’s Dogmatic Constitution on the Church.

Cardinal João Braz De Aviz, head of the Vatican Congregation for the Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies for Apostolic Life, said the Year of Consecrated Life is to “make a grateful remembrance of the recent past” while embracing “the future of hope.”

Mary Ann Walsh, R.S.M., is U.S. Church correspondent for America.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

The news from Ireland and the United States remind us of Herod, of Pharaoh. What culture betrays its children?
The EditorsMay 26, 2018
A woman religious casts her ballot May 25 in Dublin as Ireland holds a referendum on its law on abortion. Voters went to the polls May 25 to decide whether to liberalize the country's abortion laws. (CNS photo/Alex Fraser, Reuters)
The repeal of Ireland's Eighth Amendment, which guarantees the right to life of the unborn, is passing by a 2-1 margin with most of the votes counted.
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos testifies at a House Committee on Education and the Workforce, Tuesday, May 22, 2018, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
The Secretary of Education stirred up controversy when she said it was up to schools to decide if an undocumented student should be reported to authorities.
J.D. Long-GarcíaMay 25, 2018
Thousands gathered in Dublin May 12 to say "Love Both" and "Vote No" to abortion on demand. They were protesting abortion on demand in the forthcoming referendum May 25. (CNS photo/John McElroy)
“Priests and bishops get verbal abuse by being told, ‘How can you speak for women? You don’t know what it’s like!’”
America StaffMay 25, 2018