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CALL to LOVE: Perpetual Profession of Afra and Agnes— October 5, 2002

Sisters Agnes and Afra on the day of their final profession."The Father calls us to follow his Son in faithfulness, to stand at the foot of the cross with Mary and the holy women, there, as Faithful Companions of Jesus, to be one with him in his thirst for the coming of the kingdom. In love and worship we profess the public religious vows of chastity, poverty and obedience and dedicate ourselves unreservedly, for the greater service and glory of God to the evangelization of God’s people.”                                       (FCJ Constitutions, no. 2)

With profound awe at God’s call and with joy Agnes Rosliana Samosir and Afra Primadiana made their final profession in the Society of the Sisters Faithful Companions of Jesus, on October 5th, 2002. The ceremony and Eucharist were held in our parish church at Pringwulung, Yogyakarta.

It was a first experience for everybody. It was the first time for the FCJs to have a final profession in Indonesia, and the final profession of two Indonesian women. It was also the first time for the people here to be able to attend such a ceremony at a Sunday Mass in a parish church.

Grouop of Indonesian FCJs.Previously our profession Eucharists for First Vows, have all been held at our community house at Soropadan. About 800 people including fcJ sisters, and Agnes and Afra’s families and friends, packed the church to pray and celebrate together. Fr. Ignatius Ismartono SJ, Afra’s friend, celebrated the Eucharist. Although he had celebrated many Nuptial Masses, this was his first mass for a religious profession!

From our new FCJ Province of Asia-Australia, Anne Cooney and Catherine Moore came from Australia and Annabelle Delos Santos (Bing) came from the Philippines. Altogether there were 19 FCJs gathered together for the occasion.

FCJ Sisters from Asia-AustraliaFriends from our Basic Christian Communities (BCC) helped to organize the event. The choir was also from a BCC. It sang beautifully with the accompaniment of organ and flute. Some hymns were Indonesian in Eastern Indonesian style, two others were from the Philippines (Your Heart Today and Tanging Yaman – You Are The Only Treasure), and we sang an English Magnificat (by Dolley Bramley). Agnes’ nephew and mother, Afra’s niece and mother, and the two Filippina sisters formed the offertory procession.

The Vow ceremony was the most beautiful part of all. Barbara Brown-Graham on behalf of Paula Terroni, our General Superior, received Agnes and Afra’s vows.

Sr. Barbara receives the vows of Sisters Agnes and Afra.Standing in front of so many people while making the Vows had an effect on both the sisters and on those who were witnessing.

God reminded us again of God's great love for us, and the call to us to love, to give our lives forever to God. For a life-long commitment we believe that God who has called us and granted us abundant grace to desire and make the vows, will grant us the grace to fulfill them. And it was a joyful moment when all the FCJs present welcomed Agnes and Afra with an embrace while the Magnificat was sung.

Agnes and Afra during the prayer ritual.After the Eucharist, the whole congregation was invited to go to the basement of the church where they greeted Agnes and Afra and then enjoyed some traditional snacks and drinks.

Photo:  Traditional Indonesian ceremony of blessing.The families and close friends went straight to the FCJ Soropadan house just 10 minutes away by car or motor bike, and continued the celebrations there.

Agnes’ family presented Agnes, Afra and Barbara with their traditional ulos, a piece
Photo: traditional blessing.of material, usually used over
the shoulder, and gave a special blessing by putting rice on their heads.

This was really a celebration for everyone. We hope that this occasion has deepened our relationship with God and strengthened our commitment. For everyone who was united with us in thought and prayer, for those who sent us cards, faxes, e-mails and little gifts, THANK YOU very much. God bless you. Syukur kepada ALLAH.

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Ang aming Samahan ay may layuning purihin
       ang puso ni Hesus
           sa lahat ng kapangyarihan niya.     (Marie Madeleine)