Under Our Lady’s Mantle

We Visitation Sisters are particularly dedicated to Our Blessed Mother under the theme of her visitation to her cousin, St. Elizabeth. Our tradition suggests that any woman who discovers a vocation to our Visitandine, monastic way of life has received a “secret visitation” of the Virgin Mary in her heart.

We believe that this is the case with our novice Sr. Synthia,  who will be professing her first vows on Our Lady’s Feast of the Assumption, August 15th, 2014. A true spiritual daughter of our Blessed Mother, Sr. Synthia will make this First Profession in our Sacred Heart Chapel.

Please continue to pray for her as she prepares for this holy commitment.

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Upcoming First Profession

Our second year Novice, Sister Synthia, has been accepted for First Profession. Please pray for her as she deepens her commitment to the Lord Jesus!

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The Annual Sacred Heart Novena will take place in Visitation Monastery’s Sacred Heart Chapel, with a 7:30PM Mass every night for nine evenings, From Thursday June 19- Friday June 27, 2014.

The celebrants are:

UPDATE: THURSDAY JUNE 26 Celebrant has been changed to: Very Rev. Tizio CssR


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Pentecost with St. Francis de Sales

The great Feast of Pentecost, which completes the Easter season, falls on Sunday June 8th this year.

The Holy Spirit is always ready to give us spiritual gifts, and especially on this day.

St. Francis de Sales assists us in asking for these gifts:

“May it please the Divine Majesty to grant us the gift of fear that we may serve Him filially; the gift of piety to revere Him as our most loving Father, the gift of knowledge to know the good we ought to do and the evil we ought to avoid, the gift of fortitude to overcome courageously all difficulties in the practice of virtue, the gift of counsel to discern and to choose the true way of perfection, the gift of understanding to realize the beauty and benefit of the mysteries of faith and of the truths of the Gospel; finally the gift of wisdom to taste how good God is, to savor and experience the sweetnesses of His incomprehensible benignity.

Oh! How happy shall we be, if we receive these priceless gifts, for doubtless, they will lead us to the summit of this mystical ladder where we shall be received by our Divine Savior who awaits us there with open arms, to make us participants of His glory and felicity.” (Sermon for the Feast of Pentecost)

Read the entire sermon here:


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Feast of the Visitation

Saturday, May 31st, is the Feast of the Visitation,the Titular Feast of the Order of the Visitation.

Scholar Helene Bordes enlightens us theologically about the meaning of this Feast in the mind and heart of St. Francis de Sales, Founder of the Order. In her article, The Sermons of St. Francis de Sales, Ms. Bordes concludes, ” ..in St. Francis de Sales, the mystery of the Visitation is how to live already risen from the dead,and already in the world of the Transfiguration, when creation is not anymore groaning in one great act  of giving birth.”

She suggests that in the Visitation, “Easter is lived to its fullness, in the present instant. This reading of the mystery of the Visitation, model of the ‘hidden life’, gives complete unity to the thought and Salesian style,and is for the bishop (St Francis de Sales) the thread that unites the mysteries of faith with them.

To live and to speak the Visitation is to live and to speak Easter in the light of the actual mystery of Christ, the Transfiguration at work in the world and in time. It is the realization of the Incarnation.

The Incarnation  is “visitation” of man by God,…

The exchange which is the mystery of the Visitation shows how the love of God  and the love of neighbor, comparable but not identical,, cannot function without each other.”

Source: Salesian Insights, 1999.



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Chat about Later-in -Life Vocations

Despite Struggles and Obstacles, the Church Welcomes Late Vocations

A sister to St. Therese of the Lisieux, Leonie Martin decided at the age of twelve to enter the Poor Clares.

Leonie’s family saw her difficult temperament as an obstacle to religious life, but in 1889, at the age of twenty-three, she entered the Poor Clares. Due to poor health, she stayed with them only two months before she was forced to leave.

However, she wrote “my soul’s deepest wish is the desire for intimate union with Jesus”, and a year later, entered the Visitation of Holy Mary. Yet after only six months, Leonie returned home, unable to bear the sacrifices. Soon after, her younger sister Therese was accepted to the Carmelites.

Again in 1893, Leonie asked permission to return to the novitiate, and stayed with the Visitandines for two years before the trials and struggles overwhelmed her. At last, in 1899, at the age of thirty-five, Leonie received the grace to live out her religious vocation. For the third time, she entered the Visitation convent – and this time, remained there until her death four decades later.

Many women experience similar obstacles and frustrations towards entering religious life. While the requirements vary from community to community, the Visitation Order welcomes both young and mature candidates.

To prepare for Sunday’s chat, please read our article, “Visitation Vocations: Early and Late.”

In our Living Jesus Chat Room this Sunday, we will discuss these points:

  • What are some struggles of women who discover a vocation later in life? From personal experience, do you have advice can you give?
  • Despite the many setbacks, Leonie never saw her “failures” as a sign that she did not have a religious vocation. Why do you think she felt this way?
  • Not all religious orders accept mature women with later vocations. Why might this be?

Sign up for our Chat Room Come to our Living Jesus Chat Room, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM Eastern Time U.S. this Sunday. Sign up here and get your own username, or just come on Sunday and sign in as a guest. Seats are limited so, come on time



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A Novitiate Spring

The lovely spring weather has brought both Novices ( and Canadian geese!) onto our monastic grounds to rejoice in the beauty of God’s creation.

An evening recreation outside reveals the splendors of nature even in Brooklyn, New York!







We thank our weekend vocational discerner for these photos! She too enjoyed Brooklyn beauty.

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Brooklyn Group Attends Canonizations

A group of the faithful from the Diocese of Brooklyn attended the recent canonizations of St. John the 23rd and St. John Paul 11.

Can you spot the Visitandine among them?

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“My Life… Must Be A Perfect Copy of that of St. Francis de Sales”

Two new Saints on Divine Mercy Sunday! The Church prepares for the canonization of St. John XXIII and St. John Paul II. As Visitation Sisters, we recognize the work of our founder, St. Francis de Sales present in the spiritual lives of these two popes!

As a seminarian, John XXIII chose St. Francis as his patron saint, and strove to model his life after him. He wrote in his autobiography “Journal of a Soul” on St. Francis de Sales’ feast day, January 29, 1903:

“Today was a perfect feast; I spent it in the company of St Francis de Sales, my gentlest of saints. What a magnificent figure of a man, priest and Bishop! If I were like him, I would not mind even if they were to make me Pope! I love to let my thoughts dwell on him,on his goodness and on his teaching. I have read his life so many times! His counsels are so acceptable to my heart. By the light of his example I feel more inclined to humility, gentleness and calm. My life, so the Lord tells me, must be a perfect copy of that of St Francis de Sales if I wish to bear good fruits.”

During his pontificate, John Paul II also praised this saint.

“Doctor of love, Saint Francis de Sales has unceasingly emphasized the lively source of the covenant of God with man: God loves us, God accompanies us at each stage of life, with a patient and faithful love; God puts in us His desire for what is good; an attraction towards what is beautiful and good.

“…Francis de Sales was tireless in showing his brothers and sisters the patience and tenderness of God ready to pardon, to save. He does not cease to transmit the Good News of the Annunciation: the Son of the Most High born of Mary comes to be united to humanity. In a distraught world, the presence of Jesus reopens the ‘wounds of love’, cures distressed hearts, offers a covenant of pardon and of renewal.”



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Holy Week Schedule

The Triduum of Holy Days, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Vigil Mass at Brooklyn Visitation Monastery will be celebrated by a Redemptorist Father in our Sacred Heart Chapel.

Holy Thursday, April 17, 2014 at 7:30 PM

Good Friday      April 18, 2014 at 3:00PM

Holy Saturday   April 19, 2014 at 7:30PM

Easter Sunday Mass will be at 9:00AM

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