There are 27 sisters in the Carmelite convent of Saint Joseph, in Breznica Djakovacka (Croatia), dedicated to a life of silence and prayer in the spirit of Saint Teresa of Avila. Their ages range between 26 and 80, and their vocation is prayer – prayer for the needs and the salvation of the whole world. At the same time the convent is a much loved oasis of peace and silence, regularly sought out by those seeking counsel and consolation and the support of the sisters‘ prayers.
This year there were additional reasons for rejoicing, when on 15 April 2018 young Sister Marija Ana of Divine Providence formally made her solemn profession.
„In making my profession, I resolve to persevere until death in following Jesus Christ, the Bridegroom, in this Teresian family of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel“, she promised as she made her permanent vows. The Eucharistic celebration was led by Archbishop Djuro Hranic of the diocese of Djakovo-Osijek, joined by eleven other concelebrating priests, and the moving ceremony was accompanied by the singing of the seminarians from the diocesan seminary. When the young sister stepped out from behind the screened-off choir enclosure to greet her family members, many were moved to tears.
In his homily the Archbishop reminded those present that it is Jesus himself who takes the initiative in every vocation, for it is Jesus who calls. The religious in question is simply responding to his call. The sisters of the Carmel have left everything to follow Jesus; their hands are empty and they have entrusted themselves entirely to God‘s Providence. And for almost 30 years now it is through the generosity of our benefactors that this Divine Providence has operated, for you have been faithfully supporting them during this time. Despite the fact that Croatia joined the European Union in July 2013, the sisters have seen absolutely no benefit from this. Despite their modest lifestyle, they face constantly rising living costs. And as contemplative sisters living in the convent enclosure, they have only limited means of supporting themselves, above all when medication or medical treatment is required. We are therefore proposing to support them once again this year, with a contribution of 8,100 Euros towards their general living costs.