You could see it in the gleam in her eyes and the broad smile on her face, …
The Shrine of Our Lady of Joyful Hope in Kingstree, SC, was the setting as S Heather Marie Deneen renewed her temporary vows in the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Felix of Cantalice.
The ceremony took place during the Eucharistic Liturgy celebrated by Father Stanley Smolenski, rector of the shrine and longtime friend of the Felician Sisters in South Carolina and Connecticut.
S Nancy Marie Jamroz, provincial vicar, and S MaryAnne Olekszyk, provincial councilor, witnessed her vows. SM Jacqueline Benbenek, local minister, SM Susanne Dziedzic, along with Sister Heather’s mentor, SM Johnna Ciezobka, as well as Jill Hawley (who is discerning God’s will for her life) and friends of the shrine, also witnessed the renewal of vows.
In his homily, Father Stanley emphasized how religious life reflects the stable love of God that the human heart longs for as well as the importance of keeping one’s heart and mind fixed on Jesus. He also reflected on the gospel of the rich young man who could not follow Jesus because he had many possessions. He noted that religious life demands a deeper relationship with Jesus, where nothing gets in the way of Him and fidelity means following Him to the cross.
Sister Heather is an assistant outreach minister at the Felician Center in Kingstree, SC.