Born in Italy of a Maltese father, Sister Maria Adeodata Pisani came here at the age of nineteen, and spent most of her life as a splendid figure of Benedictine religious consecration in the Monastery of Saint Peter. I know that some of the Sisters of the Monastery were not able to come here, but are following this ceremony on television. To you, dear Sisters, I send a very special blessing on this happy day. Prayer, obedience, service of her Sisters and maturity in performing her assigned tasks: these were the elements of Maria Adeodata's silent, holy life. Hidden in the heart of the Church, she sat at the Lord's feet and listened to his teaching (cf. Luke 10:39), savouring the things that last for ever (cf. Colossians 3:2). Through her prayer, work and love, she became a well-spring of that spiritual and missionary fruitfulness without which the Church cannot preach the Gospel as Christ commands, for mission and contemplation require each other absolutely (cf. Novo Millennio Ineunte, 16). Sister Adeodata's holy example certainly helped to promote the renewal of religious life in her own Monastery. I therefore wish to commend to her intercession a special intention of my heart. Much has been done in recent times to adapt religious life to the changed circumstances of today, and the benefit of this can be seen in the lives of very many men and women religious. But there is need for a renewed appreciation of the deeper theological reasons for this special form of consecration. We still await a full flowering of the teaching of the Second Vatican Council on the transcendent value of that special love of God and others which leads to the vowed life of poverty, chastity and obedience. I commend to all consecrated men and women the example of personal maturity and responsibility which was wonderfully evident in the life of Blessed Adeodata.
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