A tribute to one of our sisters

Sister Mary of the Pure Heart (Terese McKenna), O.P.

As the Easter season draws closer to the beautiful Solemnity of Pentecost, it seems fitting to remember one of our sisters who went to her heavenly reward ten years ago.

Sr. Mary of the Pure Heart was our Liturgist for many years and was musically gifted. She also helped out in the novitiate by teaching a class on “cultivating attentiveness to the presence of God, particularly through the gift of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.” She based her thoughts on the following prayer which is also the Sequence for Pentecost. Sister taught more by her example than her actual words. She obviously loved the Liturgy and the observance of study. In ordinary things, such as the Mass readings of the day, she would find many wonderful insights which she connected to this prayer. May you, too, find this prayer enriching to your spiritual life.

Come, Thou Holy Spirit, come/ and from Thy celestial home/ shed a ray of light divine.

Come, Thou Father of the poor/ come, Thou source of all our store/ come, within our bosoms shine.

Thou of comforters the best/ Thou, the soul’s most welcome guest/ sweet refreshment here below.

In our labor, rest most sweet/ grateful coolness in the heat/ solace in the midst of woe.

O most blessed light divine/ shine within these hearts of Thine/ and our inmost being fill.

Where Thou are not, man hath naught/ nothing good in deed or thought/ nothing free from taint of ill.

Heal our wounds, our strength renew/ on our dryness pour Thy dew/ wash the stains of guilt away.

Bend the stubborn heart and will/ melt the frozen, warm the chill/ guide the steps that go astray.

On the faithful, who adore/ and confess Thee evermore/ in Thy sev’nfold gift descend.

Give them virtue’s sure reward/ give them Thy salvation, Lord/ give them joys that never end. Amen. Alleluia.