On 14 Dec, as the Carmelite family celebrated the Solemnity of St John of the Cross, they knelt down and sang the Litany for the rite of religious profession as the candidate prostrated to implore the intercession of all saints

By Catherine Wan

Dec 17 2021

KOTA KINABALU – After a span of 15 years, the Carmelite family thanked God for Sr Marialina of the Holy Family, who finally made her solemn profession to dedicate herself wholeheartedly to God.

The ceremony took place on Dec 14, the Solemnity of St John of the Cross, father of the Discalced Carmelite Order.

The profession of Sr Marialina of the Holy Family, who hailed from Kota Marudu, was witnessed by her mother Rosinah Gomirong, her two siblings, cousins and the Carmelite community. Her father, George Mazaul was unwell and could not attend the ceremony.

Born on 16 October 1996, she entered the Carmelite monastery on 7 January 2017, at the age of 21, and took her habit on 13 December 2017, and subsequently made her temporary profession on 14 December 2018.

After six years of formation and discernment, she professed her final vows of obedience, chastity and poverty before the Prioress after the chanting of the Litany of the Saints over her.

During the rite, she handed the Formula of Profession through the communion window to the celebrant, Fr Mattheus Luta, and witnessed by concelebrant Fr Thomas Madanan who also hails from Kota Marudu. Fr Mattteus then placed the Formula of Profession on the altar, signifying her willingness to consecrate herself as a bride to Christ, her only Bridegroom.

After the blessing of the final professed, the celebrant handed the veil to the professed through the communion window saying: “Receive this veil as a sign of your consecration, and keep unbroken faith with your heavenly Bridegroom. It proclaims that you belong entirely to Christ and His mystical Body, the Church.”   To which Sr Marialina sang in reply: “He has placed a sign upon my face, so that I may have no other lover but Him.”

Earlier on during the homily, Fr Mattheus explained that St John of the Cross was chosen by God to assist St Teresa of Avila in the reforming work of Discalced Carmelite Order.

St Teresa desired to help the Church and obtain the sanctification of priests, whereas St John longed to help souls in reaching the union with God by teaching them to climb the slope of pure faith and complete detachment.

Fr Mattheus added, the solemn profession is God’s gift, which calls for sanctification of the professed so that the chosen one may unite more closely to God by the bond of the solemn profession – which is to undertake the life of perfect chastity, obedience and poverty, for perfection in the love of God and of neighbor, persevering in prayer, penance and holiness of life.

Let us continue to pray for Sr Marialina‘s perseverance in her religious vocation.  

Fr Mattheus (third from right) and Fr Thomas  Madanan (fourth from right)  together with Sr Marialina’s mother (second right), siblings and her cousins