Archive for February, 2008

Celebrating First Profession

Saturday, February 2nd, 2008

Antonieta Montejo of the Philippines took her first vows as a sister of Our Lady’s Missionaries in Toronto on February 2, 2008. Sr Anie, 36, was born and raised in southern Philippines and joined Our Lady’s Missionaries in Cagayan de Oro, Mindanao, on her life’s journey to commit to loving service in Christ. Anie is the fourth of the six children in a farming family. Having taken and graduated from a course in Fisheries, she first worked with a farmers’ cooperative and later joined a village (barangay) council and served as its secretary.

Sr.Anie arrived in Canada in 2006 to complete her novitiate and continue her discernment of the life God wills for her. Her earlier experiences led her to better understand life in multicultural Canada, where she has worked in the grassroots, and where she has found her calling to work among First Nations and other indigenous groups. She has been to Saint Theresa Point in Manitoba and to Guyana. She has also volunteered in the downtown Toronto women’s drop-in, Mustard Seed run by the Sisters of St. Joseph.

During Anie’s first profession, Ojibwey tribal elder John Robinson led a purification ceremony to acknowledge God’s work in life – both in the individual and in nature – with a smudging of four medicines (tobacco, sage, cedar, and sweet grass) frequently used in native rituals and ceremonies. The purification reflected Anie’s own love for nature, which makes her “persevere and be relaxed and calm.” Her inner strength can also be seen in the hard work she puts in as a member of the OLM community.

The celebrant, Fr Michael Traher of the Scarboro Foreign Missions (SFM), together with OLM Sisters, welcomed Anie into the consecrated life.

One thing she enjoys, she smiles, is to shovel snow – this from a woman who had dreaded the legendary cold winters of Canada.