Today my husband, Lewis, and I attended a ceremony in which a Magdalen Pub friend became an Oblate of St. Benedict, having associated herself with the Benedictine Sisters of Virginia.

The intention of oblation is to “be concerned about striving to be a daughter or son of God and a temple of the Holy Spirit. This means that an Oblate offers one’s self (the meaning of the word “oblate”) for the service of God and others to the best of one’s ability…..(carrying) out the usual duties of one’s particular state in life, wherever one is, continuing whatever profession or occupation in life one has by caring for – family, friends and others.”

One of the Sister’s spent time with those of us who attended and supported the Oblates in their commitment process and shared at length about the community and its work. My husband went along with a group and another Sister for a walk through the “Place of Peace.”

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The monastary is located in the gentle rolling hills of Virginia, near Manassas and “A Place of Peace” now includes an eleven-circuit labyrinth, a beautiful setting among cedars of the Stations of the Cross, extended wildflower and perennial gardens, two farm silos that have been transformed by large stained glass windows as symbols of peace, along with an ancient grotto.

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We both found the community to be warm, open, and spiritually refreshing and we enjoyed the opportunity to be with our friends from the Magdalen Pub.

At right are Magdalen pub-sibs Grace, Susan (Benedictine Oblate), myself, and Eleanor in a group photo (courtesy of Eleanor).

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