2008 November, Newsletter

Tidings of Ty Mam Duw
2008

This past year, which saw the 80th anniversary of the arrival in Flint of our founding Sisters from London, has seen us typing up the hand-written annals of those early days, with the many challenges they faced in their first two years in a semi-detached house there. The account tells of their welcome by so many new friends, and their move to the present site in Hawarden in 1930, where in later years the existing monastery was gradually built. Those of us here who only knew our founding Sisters in their old age are indebted to those who wrote the annals. They enable us to look back with gratitude and rejoice in the irrepressible Poor Clare spirit of joy in the Lord, thankfulness for all His blessings and trust in His protection and guidance in all the vicissitudes of life. We hope that its own way this edition of our annual “Tidings”, written in very different times is simply another chapter in similar vein recounting God’s goodness to His people and the unfolding life of our community.

Despite the wet blustery weather, our carol service last year was well attended. Its theme was time and eternity, expressed in the prayer of Our Holy Mother St Colette, Blessed be the hour in which Our Lord Jesus Christ, God and Man was born. We acted out simply the account of the night when the Matins bell was rung too early by mistake at a time when the town in which her convent was situated was under siege from the Burgundian army, and the townsfolk feared she was signaling to the enemy to storm the walls.
It is said that the Lord saved the situation by getting all the clocks to chime midnight, the usual hour for the choir bell, much to the relief of Colette and her Sisters. Her prayer was sung in a simple responsorial form. There were varied carols reflecting the theme, and slides projected on the sanctuary wall. The service ended as usual with the blessing of the Advent wreath.

On the Feast of Saint Nicholas we were delighted with a visit by the saint in person who, despite his celestial cope and mitre just happened to bear a remarkable resemblance to Sr Elizabeth! He accompanied by Saint Colette, who had been christened Nicolette after him. After reminiscing about their respective lives on earth, they distributed to each of us the gifts they had brought. St Colette had brought with her a basket of virtues to distribute with love from Saint Anne, while St Nicholas’ gifts were of the chocolate and soap variety and all much appreciated.

In December we added to our small Schoenstatt chapel a very lovely pottery figure of the Archangel Michael, shown treading Satan underfoot. We had to make it larger than was necessary to allow for considerable shrinkage in the kiln, and so it could only be fired in two separate parts. Great indeed was the relief when the careful calculations this involved brought the desired results!

Advent also brought with it our evening gatherings for informal shared prayer and reflection. One particularly arresting one by Sr Yolanda comprised the tale of a young girl who, by going through a door in an industrial wasteland, found herself caught up in a living experience of the drama of God’s saving love as depicted in the striking murals of the modern Mater Redemptoris chapel in the Vatican.

As Christmas neared, with the arrival of a beautiful large tree for the sanctuary of our chapel, Dear Mother and Marianne spent a fruitful day decorating it to the glory of God with home-made straw stars, some of intricate design, fretwork angels and sets of white candle lights. Meanwhile our Beloved Mother Francesca was doing Christmas baking, and various inviting smells wafted round the cloister as a promise of good things to come.

This year our choir crib, which virtually spans the whole range of salvation history, included several new scenes, among them the “tree of Jesse”, and the prophet Elijah being taken up to heaven in a fiery chariot drawn by white horses.

Our Christmas Vigil was based on a long and moving sermon by St Anthony on the Nativity. This was followed by a resoundingly joyful Midnight Mass celebrated by Fr Adrian OFMCap from Chester, for which we had written some new music. Afterwards we spent a couple of hours with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, singing carols in front of the manger. As we knelt there we brought before the Christchild the many needs we had been asked to pray for, as well as those of the Church and the world as a whole.

Over Christmastide we gathered in turn at the very varied cribs erected in the cloister, with prayers and psalms and a reflection on specific themes. These ranged from one based on a talk by Papa Bene in his earlier Cardinal Ratzinger days on the significance of presence of the ox and the ass at the manger, to one by Sr Elizabeth and Sr Pia on the plight of the people of modern-day Bethlehem as depicted in a recent National Geographic.

Sr Beatrix had decorated the cloister windows with the first lines from various well-known carols, as a quiz for us. The approach to the task differed according to people’s personality!. A few were able simply to sing the music and get the answer, others played the notes on recorders, and one even trundled a small keyboard from window to window. A few preferred the direct but less musical approach, comparing the music with that given in the hymnbook, and so finding the words to the first lines. In the end we were all rewarded with a prize for our efforts.

The Christmas recreations and activities were as varied as ever. We spent a day in Zimbabwe with Sr Juliana and Sr Yolanda as our guides. We began by learning how to recite the ‘Our Father’ in the Ndebele language, and with a large map of the country on display were given a short introduction to its geography, main products and native peoples. Afterwards Sr Juliana told us a folk-tale of a young man, who though badly injured in a crocodile attack, survived it with the help of a falcon which came to his defence - a tale mirroring the struggles of the people and leading to the depiction of a falcon on their national flag.
The history of Zimbabwe since its days of the first contact with Europeans, was simply and vividly depicted in mini-scenes, depicting young people of successive generations. We were then shown various forms of art and creativity current in Zimbabwe - from basalt carving, to painting with the use of clay and dyes, embroidery in African-style patterns, and the the work of ‘praise-singers’ who laud their ancestors or descendants, and the achievements of tribal or national leaders. (Sr Agatha later composed a moving praise-song in honour of Our Lady.) We were then given a break to try our hands at some of the simpler forms of these arts, and later treated to African cookery at dinner.

Our evening Vespers that day comprised the showing of pictures of a Zimbabwe Way of the Cross, accompanied by the reading of excerpts from a pastoral letter by the Bishops there, analysing the causes of the horrendous conditions in the country and calling for responsible leadership and a new way forward to a hope and a future for the ordinary people who are suffering so much. We were also visited later this year by a Bishop from those parts who spoke of his own experience of the overwhelming distress of the ordinary people. While he was here we had a special Vespers, in the course of which we blessed him with the veil of Saint Colette on behalf of them all, placing them under the cloak and strong motherly care of our Blessed Lady.

A New Year recreation comprised the acting-out of the Holy Father’s recent encyclical Spe Salvi. The action took many forms, including light-hearted dialogue (with a genuine depth of meaning behind the humour). The most amusing scene was one involving Mrs Pringle, the ubiquitous char-lady who appears every Christmas, this time when dusting Karl Marx’s study and arguing with him about his outlook on life.
Later on she was shown meeting him once more at the gates of heaven, where they had both arrived on the same day. Mrs Pringle was allowed into the heavenly antechamber where she could dust the celestial pillars in the company of the angels. Marx, on the other hand, was dismayed to find himself facing the front door of a heaven he still couldn’t bring himself to believe in, and charged with a long list of sins and a short one of virtues attributed to him. Mercifully an angel arrived just on time with a heavenly pardon for him (due to the prayers of the Poor Clares), relegating him to purgatory, much to his relief, instead of to hotter eternal quarters! Also starring were two great modern apostles of hope, Cardinal Francis Xavier Van Thuan of Vietnam and St Josephine Bakhita of Darfur, as well as the 19th century Korean martyr, St Paul Le-Bao-Tinh - all three received extensive mention in the encyclical. We ended with Vespers, which incorporated several short songs based on words from Spe Salvi, and reading of excerpts from its concluding pages, in which Our Lady is spoken of as Star of the Sea, shining upon us and guiding our way to the Kingdom of God.

In February we had a number of people for a day of guided prayer. The overall theme of the day was baptism, with a large silk–painted banner we had made serving as a visual aid. Our Beloved Mother Francesca gave two talks in the parlour, after which the participants divided into four smaller groups for shared prayer, each led by one of our Sisters. They later reassembled in choir to recite Sext with us. Vespers was based on the theme of the day, and during it we all went forward in turn to bless ourselves with holy water and recall our baptism before renewing our baptismal vows. Those who came were delighted with the ‘freebies’ to take home with them - an illustrated booklet explaining the scenes depicted on the banner, and a small decorated jar of holy water.

Holy Week brought not only the usual liturgical celebrations commemorating Our Lord’s suffering, death and resurrection, but also the erection of a large Celtic-style stone “Cross of the Church” in front of the monastery. It is the focal point of a small memorial garden to our former Bishop, Archbishop Ward, without whose encouragement and support Ty Mam Duw would not exist today. Our first foundress, Mother Cherubina, had longed to have a large cross in the front garden of the monastery, and her dream has at last come true thanks to the kindness of good friends who made it possible.

Good Friday was as always a solemn and moving day. After the Good Friday afternoon service the shrouded figure of the dead Christ was placed in a watery tomb, a fitting form of burial to harmonise with the paschal tableau’s theme of baptism. It was a poignant moment when His body disappeared below the surface and sank into the depths, leaving behind an eerie trail of air bubbles that had been trapped in the garments. On Easter Day he was represented risen in glory in a shining white garment, a reminder of our own baptism, and the baptismal vows we had all renewed at the long and lovely Vigil the night before.
The Lord worked a minor liturgical miracle weatherwise, as far as the holy fire for the Easter Vigil was concerned. During Holy Week the rain lashed down in sheets, preventing us from collecting and drying out extra wood for it and on Holy Saturday morning we also had some snow and sleet. When it came to the beginning of the Vigil the weather was the most perfect we had ever known, not a breath of wind and even an almost full paschal moon poised over the pine trees! To the consternation of the Sister tending the holy fire, Fr Austin Milner OP, who was to celebrate the midnight Mass came right outdoors in his beautiful silk-painted vestments to bless it. Just as well that there were none of the usual sparks flying about!

On the evening of Easter Day we gathered in choir to listen to a CD of an oratorio, by his brother Anthony Milner, the well-known composer who died some years ago. Called The Water and the Fire, it was very moving, combining the themes of the world’s need of redemption, the soul’s search for God, the Easter Vigil liturgy with the blessing of the holy fire and the paschal candle, the Harrowing of Hell and the Resurrection of Christ, all culminating in the liturgy of holy Mass, the eternal sacrifice that makes God’s redemptive love present in every age.

On the Saturday of Easter Week we had a very lovely celebration at which Father Gareth Jones together with four other priest friends offered a special Mass for Archbishop Ward’s anniversary. After receiving holy communion we all processed out to the front garden for the blessing of the cross in his memory, each taking a small pot planted with spring bulbs to place in front of it.
(Later Sr Beatrix had to dry off five sets of vestments, but things could have been wetter!) His sister Margaret was present, and vividly recalled the days when she and her brother used to play and run round the extern garden as youngsters with the extern Sisters keeping a sisterly eye on them!

In April we were also blessed with a visit from Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds, who came and gave us two very thought-provoking talks on the overall theme of “communion”. These covered a wide range of topics with equally wide-ranging quotes by way of illustration. He has been involved in the preparation and translation of the English version of the new Roman Missal, which it is hoped will be published in about two years’ time. Later in the year one of his collaborators in this major enterprise, Mgr Bruce Harburt, came to talk to us about the different prayers through the centuries which have been included in the new missal, and the translators’ attempt to make the language used more dignified and truer to its origins than is the present version.

Thanks to EWTN we were also able to follow happenings further afield in the Church in the past year, chief among them the visits of Pope Benedict XVI to the United States and to World Youth Day in Sydney. We not only saw a goodly amount of TV coverage, but heard the full text of his main talks there as part of our customary reading aloud at mealtimes. Someone was quoted as saying that “Pope John Paul made you feel, but Papa Bene makes you think” which seemed a very apt comment. We were also amused at the disgruntled remark of one official after Papa Bene’s later visit to France that he “seduced everyone by his humility”!
In more recent days we have also had the joy of viewing a direct telecast of the solemn Mass at Birmingham Oratory, in which the few mementoes of Cardinal Newman found in his grave were placed in a glass-sided casket in the church, in readiness for his possible beatification in the not too distant future.

In May and June we were blessed with several triduums with time for extra prayer and reflection. The first was given by Mgr Atherton on the Psalms, which form so large a part of our own life and that of the Church as a whole. It is indeed a wonderful sign of the times that an ever increasing number of lay people now pray part of the daily Office of the Church, either at home, especially if they are sick or housebound, or by attending on occasion the regular round of prayer and praise which is intrinsic to the life of every monastic community. It can be overwhelming to realise that the psalms were not only prayed by Our Lord in His earthly life but that they have also been said or sung in every language by people all over the world in the Jewish and Christian tradition, in times of tribulation and of joy for some 3000 years.
With the return of spring sunshine we spent several days sowing several kilo of runner French beans in our vegetable garden, planting out leeks and cauliflower, and setting onions (which by early September had turned out to be as “mammoth” as they was claimed). We were delighted to have a couple of robins and of blackbirds raising fledglings in the cloister garden, where we could get a good view of their anxious coming and going with worms and beetles for hungry mouths, and even felt lenient towards a mole burrowing in a rose bed, possibly to excavate a nursery.

Unfortunately our bees, despite all the tender loving care they had received over the years, simply disappeared overnight for no apparent reason, hit by the widespread phenomenon of “community collapse”. In Britain it is more appositely termed the “Marie Celeste” syndrome, from the ship of that name which was mysteriously discovered in times past drifting in calm waters with no one on board, no sign of a struggle and even the tables laid ready for a meal!

In May we also enjoyed a series of talks by Brother John Parker SM, liberally illustrated with slides on the Christian catacombs at Rome, where he had spent some time as a guide to the English-speaking tourists. The talks were fascinating, though it was somewhat disappointing to learn that, contrary to some well-known novels on the subject, the early Christians did not live in the catacombs in times of persecution, and probably only rarely celebrated Mass there.


Our hearts went out in prayer on two special occasions this year for the persecuted Christians and martyrs of our own day. The Holy Father had asked for 24 May, the Feast of Our Lady of Sheshan to be set aside for prayer for China and Canon Quigley offered Holy Mass for this intention. We had draped the lectern with a hang-down depicting Our Lady of Sheshan holding the Christchild above her head and showing him, with his arms extended in blessing, to the world. The altar was also decorated with the motto of the shrine in Chinese. “That they may be one fold and one shepherd.” In September we also had a fastday with Exposition for the suffering Christians in India, who have been undergoing much violence and the destruction of churches and homes from extremist Hindu mobs, especially in Orissa.

In June we had the long awaited celebration of our dear Sr Elizabeth’s Ruby Jubilee. Fr Gareth Jones, the religious assistant to our community, was the main celebrant, together with Canon Quigley, our parish priest. Fr Gareth’s homily was a rather unusual and apt one. He spoke of our Sister’s parents, both of whom were artists, and how her encounter as a teenager with the picture of the Holy Face from the Shroud of Turin led her to search for and discover Christ in the Catholic Church. He told of how her search had deepened over her forty years as a Poor Clare, and had enabled her to show something of Christ’s face to those around her and to the world.

Four Sisters each holding flowers and votive lights formed a semicircle round our dear Sr Elizabeth as she renewed her vows in Dear Mother’s hands. . She was then given a ruby-coloured crown surrounded by a circlet of flowers, in token of the reward promised by
God at the last for a lifetime of faithful service, and presented with a papal blessing. At the end of the Mass she received a very lovely lighted candle, made by Sr Pia with an intricate Trinitarian design.

A ‘Jubilee Room’ formed from a recess in the cloister, duly decorated with coloured drapes and curtains, with fairy lights and a symbolic representation of the Holy Trinity, was the setting for the various Jubilee gifts, which she was able to admire them at her leisure after the singing of the light-hearted song written for the occasion. The refectory decorations included a shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes as the focal point . Sr Agatha had painted a picture of Mary Immaculate for it, and even furnished a background of running water (of the recorded and not the wet variety).

Among activities later that week was a board game, which kept us happily occupied all afternoon. It was devised by Sr Yolanda and based on the C. S. Lewis book, The Last Battle, the final one in the Narnia series, and perhaps the best of them all.
The object of the game was to negotiate a winding pathway to reach the inner sanctum of Aslan’s country. There were character cards associated with the various people or creatures in the book, with virtues which enabled players to advance (hope, chivalry, truth, illumination etc), or vices forcing them to move back (cynicism, folly, falsehood, darkness) in accordance with quotes taken from the book. At regular intervals there would be a (recorded) roar from Aslan to announce bonus points for people who held certain cards, or to give those lagging behind a chance for a sudden advance towards the goal. Ultimately as the narration of the story reached its glorious and triumphant end, with even the greatest backsliders reaching their destination, we were all rewarded with a paper cornet full of “Poggin’s popcorn” fresh from the pan, made by Sr Seraphina!


Other satisfying adventures that week included a Ty Mam Duw style pilgrimage to Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome, discovering what lies under the floor where the high altar is situated. The intriguing mystery of the whereabouts of Saint Peter’s tomb was unravelled before our eyes until its final discovery along with that of his relics was confirmed by Pope Paul VI in 1968. Scores of photos, maps and diagrams were displayed on the cloister wall to illustrate the confusing and painstaking 25 year search by archaeologists. A simplified mock-up of the twenty-foot square area under the high altar which took decades to excavate in secrecy and under difficult conditions had been ingeniously constructed in cardboard. There was some very enjoyable audience participation as we took it in turns to dismantle successive walls with a utility knife, each revealing yet another one inside, adding to mounting tension and excitement until the final one came to light.


One day was spent taking a special look at the Divine Office under the guidance of Dear Mother and Sr Agatha. We began with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, with Dear Mother meditating on the themes of the midnight hour of Matins - that of struggle against darkness, calling out to God and awaiting His coming, the hour of victory in which the Son of God came into the world for its salvation, as well as that in which He rose again in triumph. After Holy Mass we gathered in the community room, where a small pottery figure representing the Holy Trinity (Sr Elizabeth’s mystery) served as the focal point. There we continued with the Prayer of the Church, praising God for the new day, dedicating it to Him. With all His children we were reminded that the hope of Christ’s resurrection would give us His strength and joy for whatever the hours ahead might bring. Terce, in front of the crucifix in the cloister reminded us both of the Passion of Christ and the coming of the Holy Spirit which was the culminating gift of all the joys of Eastertide. The other Little Hours were celebrated in similar fashion, followed by Vespers by the “Jubilee Room” was an occasion for praising God for all His gifts, especially the many graces of the Jubilee. We had more Exposition in choir during Compline, which asks God’s blessing on the end of the day and through the night, and the round of prayer and praise ended with us bringing token gifts to lay in thankfulness at the feet of Our Lord hidden in the Blessed Sacrament.

The Jubilee ended with a unique Ty Mam Duw performance in the cloister of The Last Battle. Sr Juliana had managed to produce an actable script from the text of the book and had written several lyrics which a number of our Sisters set to music. These narrated the action that required a wider scale, such as the climax of the story consisting of the Last Judgment of all the inhabitants by Aslan and his bringing the transitory world of Narnia to an end.
This led on to the great denouement, which was acted out simply with accompanying music. In it the heroes and heroines and the good animals were led ever further on and farther up into Aslan’s true world, in which where everything good they had ever known was found again, more real and lovely than ever. We had made many of the costumes especially for the performance, and most of us played two or three parts, with changes necessary between scenes, or even within the same one: the rest of the cast of thousands was provided by “voices off”! At last the story ended happily ever after in the fullest sense of the term, and with it the Jubilee - a memorably happy and creative week for us all.

After the Jubilee it was a case of “all hands on deck”, catching up with weeding the vegetables and picking all our soft fruit, which included a satisfying abundance of gooseberries ready for the jam season. Then Dear Mother and a team of Sisters donned old veils and work habits and set themselves to repainting a goodly part of the extern quarters -
Mother Cherubina must have smiled on them from heaven, remembering the number of times she and her Sisters had busied themselves washing down and distempering the walls of the old convent!

It was then high time for our dear Mother Damian to go into retreat in preparation for her Silver Jubilee in August. Fr Gareth was the chief celebrant at the opening Jubilee Mass and the chapel was packed with friends come to share our joy. The next morning we enjoyed a festive breakfast together with much reminiscing and happy memories of events shared in our life together as a family, after which we betook ourselves to the ‘Jubilee Room’ It had been beautifully decorated by Sr Beatrix and Sr Seraphina on the theme of the Word of God and the waters of baptism in which we are reborn to life in God. There we sang the special Jubilee Song, which Dear Mother followed from her own copy,extensively illustrated by Sr Agatha with a colourful picture for each of the 21 verses! The pictures had also been enlarged to form bright posters adorning the four walls of the refectory. . Sr Seraphina had made the table decorations there, comprising an exquisite origami swan made of silver paper for each Sister, its wings enfolding some home-made sweets for the festivities. We spent two happy hours with Dear Mother as she opened and admired all the gifts. Especially appreciated was a booklet with the Chaplet of Saint Colette in both English and Latin (translated into the latter by our Beloved Mother Francesca), and which a good friend in America had recorded on a CD for us to distribute.

Saint Colette definitely starred in the Jubilee. Sr Yolanda showed us a series of charming illustrations from a children’s book she had written about her, presenting each of us with a copy. She and Sr Juliana had also created a moving and very lovely video presentation on the Testament of Saint Colette with excerpts from the letters of Saint Paul in the modern Message version. The recorded text with background music was read by Sr Yolanda and accompanied by a wide variety of skilfully edited video clips used to illustrate Colette’s words.

Another feature of the Jubilee was A Duffer’s Guide to Dante, devised by Sr Elizabeth. It comprised a general outline of the section on Purgatory in the Divine Comedy, lavishly illustrated with many colourful and expressive pictures she had drawn, and which she showed us with the epidiascope. After being guided by Virgil to the gates of heaven, we accompanied Dante through the ‘earthly paradise’ where he once more met his beloved Beatrice, who would be his guide onwards into the heavenly realms. We were assured that the series would be continued at some future date when all the illustrations needed for the journey through the celestial regions had been completed by the artist!

The grand finale of the week was a long and highly amusing recreation which featured a saint from each century up till our own day. Among them were St Justin in the second century, one of early Christianity’s greatest apologists, and St Simon Stylites, a distinctly eccentric saint of the 5th century, and possibly the patron saint of pole sitters. The 9th century was represented by St Bertha and St Rupert of Bingen, a mother and son, who became hermits together, so she could cook and clean for him, as she didn’t trust him to look after himself properly! In the 17th century we were introduced to St Joseph of Cupertino, a Franciscan friar well known for his somewhat disconcerting gift of levitation. It is said that on one occasion he took to the air in public, seizing a Cardinal sitting next to him and carrying him up in the air above the heads of the congregation, much to everyone’s shock and dismay! St Katharine Drexel starred as the saint for the nineteenth century, and Blessed Josepha Hendrina, and Blessed Jacques Ghazir Haddad of Lebanon, both of whom were beatified this year, represented the twentieth century. Even though there had been no actual rehearsal, the lively script and the simple costumes enabled us all to enter fully into our respective parts at the appropriate time!

The next week we came very much down to earth harvesting our beans and picking a seemingly endless crop of apples, which later featured in the apple cakes and chutney we made for the Autumn Fair. Dear Mother and several other Sisters did a wonderful job in the cloister garden, quite transforming it. They trimmed a number of shrubs which were obscuring the windows, and also cut back hard the climbers on the central pergola. The wooden framework had become unsafe with the years of Welsh weather, so they managed to dismantle it without mishap, replacing it with new sturdier supports.

In October we joined in the celebration of World Rosary Day, uniting our own prayers for the world with those of Our Lady and of the millions of people in so many lands who were also taking part. We had Exposition from 10.30 am - 6 pm, during which we recited the 20 decades of the rosary, and sang the Divine Office. A number of people came in the course of the day to join us, which was heart-warming. Our Autumn Fair later that month went off as happily as ever, and we also spent a day participating in spirit in the three-week Synod of the Word which was taking place in Rome. We shared reflections on some of the key speeches by Bishops there, calling for Catholics to have a greater knowledge and love of the Scriptures, and the need for the Word of God to bear practical fruit in everyday life.
A Bishop from the Sudan told how essential it was to train catechists in ways of conveying the message of scripture to those who were illiterate. Later in the day we ourselves tried our hand at this, being allotted specific passages to illustrate with pictures, music, in drama form, or simply by recounting them in our own words.

And now November is here, and with it the end of the Church’s year. In its train comes the new beginning of Advent, a time to open our hearts and minds once again to the glad tidings of hope and salvation, to the light of God which shines all the more brightly when times are dark and the future uncertain. We praise Him for His many graces and blessings this year, and for all of you who have helped us in any way, be it with your own prayers, with gifts of groceries, fruit from harvest festivals, or used jam-jars. We would also remind our friends that any cheques sent to us, whether as payment for work we have done or as donations, should be made out to Poor Clare Colettine Community, as the Bank will no longer accept any other form of wording. You can be sure that each and every one of you, along with your families, and your joys and sorrows, hopes and fears, are enfolded in our hearts before the Lord. We ask Him to bless you with a new awareness of His saving nearness this Christmas, and the assurance that His love will encircle, lead and protect you day by day in the coming year.

With loving prayers,
from your Poor Clare Sisters at Ty Mam Duw