Bishop Dinualdo Gutierrez presided over the Liturgical Celebration wherein Mt. Matutum Priory was elevated into an Abbey and Mother Giovanni was blessed as the first Abbess.
Highlights of the ceremony were: the giving of the Rule, handling of pastoral cross, placing of ring on the ring-finger and giving of the staff, including the reading of the Decree of Erection and the blessing of the Abbess.
Bishop’s homily. Take care of the nuns as a loving mother cares for her children (Is. 66: 10-14). Live a holy life through love of God (Eph. 1: 3-6, 11-12). Be ready to answer the needs of the nuns as Mary was concerned for the needs of those at the wedding feast (Jh. 2: 1-11).
Conditions for a monastery to be raised to an abbey: (a) at least, 12 solemnly professed nuns; and (b) economic stability. The abbey now has 28 members professed and novices/postulants. Rapid increase since its foundation in 1995.
Thirteen priests concelebrated including several abbots. Mother Abbess’ sister and niece attended the celebration.