Sister Phuong Dong made her profession of perpetual vows on Saturday, June 10, at the Convent of the Sacred Heart in Belmont, North Carolina. Phuong entered the Sisters of Mercy in August 2012.
Phuong’s parents, sister, aunt, nephews, nieces and cousins were present to witness the profession.
They were joined by the Institute Leadership Team, Sisters of Mercy from the United States and the Philippines, and more than 500 people who viewed the ceremony online on YouTube and Facebook.
Director of New Membership Sister Eileen Campbell welcomed those gathered, saying, “Now we know Phuong is quiet but that in no way means that she is shy and retiring, although she’d like us to think so. Phuong does her fair share of stirring things up in a good way, encouraging and motivating us.”
The celebrant, Rev. Paul M. Buchanan, began Mass with the Sprinkling Rite to remind all gathered of the promises made at Baptism. Sister Elizabeth Bui-Thi-Nghia read the first Scripture passage in Vietnamese, followed by Sister Patricia Coward, who delivered the second reading in English.
During her Instruction on the vows, Sister Denise Sausville began by noting that Phuong’s profession was being held on the feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. Denise remarked that “God has become one of us, in and through a body. The Eucharist reminds us of this.”
Denise continued: “Today, Phuong, guided by the Holy Spirit, you are choosing to grow into your truth by living the life form of consecrated religious life. Within this life form, you are pledging to live in a more focused and intense way the evangelical counsels, the three vows of poverty, celibacy and obedience, relying on God’s love and grace.”
Sister Phuong made her vows in both English and Vietnamese, which were witnessed by Sisters Rose Marie Tresp and Joann Margaret Ury.