Today is the Feast of Saint Gertrude the Great, the 13th century German nun, writer, and mystic who had a devotion of praying for the holy souls in purgatory. Today is also the third anniversary of consecration to a life of perpetual virginity, as a bride of Christ, for Dawn Hausmann, Director of Consecrated Vocations for the Diocese of Lansing. Ad multos annos! Here is Dawn's prayerful reflection upon this special day. She writes:
"Three years ago on this date, November 16, Saint Gertrude became a special heavenly sister to me as I was consecrated to a life of virginity on her feast day."
"Although in outward appearance my life did not change, inwardly everything did; I truly became espoused to our Lord on that day, filled with many new graces of the consecration done unto me. A new freedom came with receiving consecration and in professing a perpetual promise of virginity for the Kingdom of God and service to his Church."
"As my brother so quaintly described what his marriage with his wife felt like after a few years in, “like a favorite cozy recliner in the heart of the home,” such is what I would describe of my own three years into marriage with Jesus…settled, peaceful, claimed, no longer aching to enter my vocation but now just resting in it and living out of it."
"Although the ‘butterfly feelings of Love’ during Jesus’ original pursuit of me has shifted to a bit calmer life and love with him, I continue to experience new ways of Jesus’ spousal presence that provides for me, protects me, guides my daily decisions that we make together, and invites me into deeper union with and trust of him."
"Lastly, I would say that over these three years, the Lord continues to grow my capacity for and understanding of ‘motherhood in the Spirit’ in various ways. He brings to my attention new people and ways for me to live as a spiritual mother and sister to those in my life."
"It’s truly a beautiful life, consecrated to our Lord. I so recommend that young people consider the consecrated life if God is giving you the grace to receive it. I’ve had moments recently where I’ve felt guilty for loving my vocation with the Lord so much but I’ve come to realize that God wants me to receive and witness to the joy and happiness of life with him so that the world will also come to know, love and believe in him for whom every heart longs."
Saint Gertrude, pray for us!