By Liz Sullivan
Through song and prayer the Diocese of San Jose bid farewell to the Year of Consecrated Life.
On January 30, at Santa Clara University’s Mission Church, more than 40 members of religious orders, along with clergy and laity, gathered for Evening Prayer presided over by Bishop Patrick J. McGrath.
The Year of Consecrated Life, which began in November of 2014, celebrated the work and lives of religious men and women throughout the diocese and the Catholic Church around the world.
“My heart is full of gratitude for all the years of faithful, faithful service by all of you,” the Bishop said. “You add so much to the life of the church.”
Father Michael Zampelli, Rector of the Jesuit Community at Santa Clara University, welcomed the congregation.
“It is particularly appropriate that some of the events during the Year of Consecrated Life were held here at Santa Clara University,” Zampelli said. “This campus is a historic testament to the religious who have served the church for many years in the Santa Clara Valley.”
Sister Elizabeth Avalos, BVM, Laryn Kovalik and Tom Pulchny shared their reflection on what it means to them to partner with religious in mission and ministry. “ There is no end to new possibilities… as we gather in prayer today singing of waking the world with joy.”
The theme of the Year of Consecrated Life was “Joy of a faithful Yes; gratefully remembering the past, embracing the future and living the present passionately.”
At the Diocese, the religious responsible for coordinating this event was Sister Rosalie Pizzo, SND, the Bishop’s Delegate to Religious.
“I see it as an end to a new beginning,” Sister Rosalie said. “The Year of Consecrated Life is a wonderful transition into the Year of Mercy as together, with the entire church we make real and credible the message of the Gospel.”