Take thou me unto thyself, O Lord, and I shall live

theotokos-9Kneeling in choir before the Most Blessed Sacrament, we renewed our vows this night.

Lord Jesus Christ, I give thee thanks with all my heart that, having loved me and given thyself for me (Galatians 2:20), thou hast further deigned to fix thy gaze upon me, saying: «If thou wilt be perfect, go sell what thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come follow me» (Matthew 19:21). Thou hast drawn me out of the world to abide in this thy house, close to the altar where, truly present, thou veilest the splendour of thy Face beneath the sacramental veils. With the psalmist, let me say to thee again and again: «Willingly would I give a thousand of my days for one spent in thy courts» (Psalm 83:11).

I thank thee, Lord Jesus Christ, that, of thy tender solicitude for my soul, thou hast gaven me as father and teacher the glorious Patriarch Saint Benedict. Grant that, schooled in his «little rule», I may begin afresh to serve Thee in obedience and in silence, in humility and in adoration, preferring nothing to thy love, spending myself in thy praise, and never despairing of thy mercy, even when brought low by sin and surrounded by enemies on every side.

I confess with deep sorrow the sins by which I have turned away from the covenant of my holy profession and, thus, divided and soiled the heart that I promised to give, whole and unspotted, to thee alone. With the royal prophet, I say: «Turn thy eyes away from my sins, blot out the record of my guilt; bring a clean heart to birth within me, O God; breathe new life, true life, into my being» (Psalm 50:11–12).

Were I not already bound to thee, O Jesus, by the vows I have made, I would do so now, O thou my One Thing Necessary (Luke 10:42), O thou my Treasure hidden in the field (Matthew 14:44), O thou my Pearl of Great Price (Matthew 14:46), saying by the grace of the Holy Ghost: «My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready» (Psalm 107:2).

I therefore promise anew stability, conversion, and obedience under the Rule of our glorious father Saint Benedict. I resolve again to devote myself to the perpetual adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar wherein thou art, still today, ignored by great multitudes, denied by heretics, delivered over to sacrilege, and treated with coldness, irreverence, and indifference even by those of thine own household. Do thou, O hidden Jesus, count me, for the sake of all thy priests, among the consolers whom Thy Heart seeks (Psalm 68:21).

Finally, O Christ Jesus, my true King, in the presence of the holy Angels and of all the saints, I entrust this renewal of my monastic profession to thy most holy Mother, Blessed Mary Ever–Virgin, taking her as my abbess, my sovereign Lady, and my Queen. I consecrate myself again to her Immaculate Heart, firmly believing that no grace of thine cometh to us, poor sinners, save through her maternal hands. «Take thou me unto thyself, O Lord, and I shall live; let me not be disappointed in my hope» (Psalm 118:116). Amen.