We wish to offer you some reflections from the sisters making their final profession in 2019, as well as the beautiful stories from their parents. Sister Teresa Margaret will make her Final Profession in July, 2019.
Reflections of Sr. Teresa Margaret
Sister Teresa Margaret is…HIS!
Ten years ago, I was packing and preparing to enter Carmel. One of the minute and almost overlooked details was the closing of my personal Facebook account. As I left to board the plane, my final Facebook status read, “Sister Teresa Margaret is…His!” And ten years later this will become a “permanent status” FOREVER! In the Song of Songs, it says, “You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride…” Jesus has named me after His Sacred Heart (Sister Teresa Margaret of the Sacred Heart), He has entrusted His heart to me, and when I profess forever my vows of Chasity, poverty, and obedience to Him, the ring I will receive has embedded within the Carmelite shield the image of His Sacred Heart. And the ring, the symbol of a mutual promise forever becomes the sign and reminder of the gift of His heart to me and mine to Him.
My patron Saint, Saint Teresa Margaret Redi, has a quote that says, “I offer myself on the altar of your heart…” As I prostrate myself during the final profession ceremony it will be upon “the altar of His heart” begging that He consume and take all of me for Himself. I remain ever-grateful for His mercy in calling me to a total gift of myself to Him in my religious vocation and that “Sister Teresa Margaret is…HIS…FOREVER!”
Reflections from Carl and Blythe Turner
I remember well the day I found out that Sister Teresa Margaret had found her calling as a Carmelite. I came home from work and on the table was a small sealed envelope addressed to “Mr. Turner (Dad)”. As I began to read the enclosed letter, I was confused upon reading the first two lines, but then my sheer joy and excitement as I read the next line: “I am writing you this letter today to ask for your daughter’s hand in marriage; to be my bride. I will love her until death takes her and she enters into my loving embrace in Heaven. I long for her to live in my Sacred Heart and that is why I am calling her to me through the sisterly love of the Carmelite Sisters of my most Sacred Heart in Los Angeles.” The letter was signed “Love, your future son-in-law, Jesus.” That joy I experienced knowing she had found her calling as a sister was truly wonderful.
As she made her first profession of vows I felt so proud and honored to walk her down the aisle arm in arm on her wedding day. The love, humility, and holiness of that moment will always be special to me. Now 10 years later, she has been approved to make her final vows. I feel such a great love for her and all that she has become. Through her healthcare ministry, she has touched so many in such a rewarding and beautiful way. My life, as well as my family’s, has been so blessed over the years she has been a Carmelite. It has been given a special “gift” given to me. Seeing her smile and the joy in her voice when we talk on the phone gives me great peace as we continue together through this journey of faith and love.
I don’t think I would be honest if I didn’t first say there was a concern about “losing” our daughter. Even though through a series of circumstances a couple of months before she told me of her decision, God had helped prepare me for the separation. I was sad for her younger brothers and sister that they might “miss out” on her influence and companionship. We were going to miss her terribly!!
It has been the greatest blessing during these years of formation (especially during her Novitiate) to get to know many of the Sisters and especially enjoyed our visits with Sister Teresa Margaret. You all were most gracious in allowing us to be part of the community in prayer, recreation, meals and tolerating our trying to keep an active young boy quiet and entertained at the same time! When Sister Teresa Margaret called upon the approval of her final vows I felt pure joy, love, and gratitude!
As you move through life, it is easier to look back and see how God has always been at work in your family even when you weren’t fully aware or even aware at all. What greater joy can there be especially during such tumultuous times in our beloved Church, to see and be a part of a Community so devoted to serving God in your Apostolates for the family. We joyfully share in God’s Will for our daughter. We have not lost her and we have gained many more!