Friday, March 27, 2009

Update on Cloistered Nuns in NJ and Prayer Request

A reader found this post and left the following update:

The Blue Chapel closed for good late March 2009. I live in Union City, Hudson, New Jersey and have followed the postings about this dominican monastery for some years.

Thank you for the postings and updates regarding cloistered sisters in New Jersey.

I believe Sister Gemma was the lone survivor and last to go. She accepted. Another of the remaining nuns died earlier in the year. Due to the seclusion of the nuns it's was not always easy to get information.

It would be appreciated if a final update with reliable facts can be posted.

Please pray for the neighboring community of residents who lived close to the monastery. They are not now without this sanctuary. After many years the end came and a familiar landmark and the presence of the nuns taken for granted.

People wonder what will happen to the building, unusual and well-maintained. Will it fall victim to vandals or fire or the wrecking ball?

We covet your prayers and pray God's will be done.

Thank you for sharing this with us.

If anyone would like to share a final update, please feel free to leave a comment or email me.
twitter / catholicmominHI


Anonymous said...

You don't know how this breaks my heart. Another consequence of the spirit of Vatican II. I know these nuns. When I was in high school eons ago they procured for me a first class relic of St. Therese. They also made me a beautiful set of Infant of Prague outfits.

I, too, would be interested in knowing more and why they had to close. It was such a beautiful and peaceful monastery.

These are such sad times.


Anonymous said...

I was granted the rare opportunity to visit the cemetery on the grounds of the Blue Chapel in Union City. Last June, Sr.Charlotte went to her rest but is buried, I am told in nearby Jersey City, N.J. There's a wooden cross that serves as a memorial for her not too far from where her fellow sisters are interred.
The gray granite markers have a simple cross incised on them and in a lower square border the name of the nun and her date of death (in rare cases year of birth). In most cases, two names are listed on the marker.
There are about 6 rows of 8 markers in all and outside the enclosed plot are two cement head stones named Duke and Dutchess, dogs born in 1966 and died in 1977. They apparently were pet companions of Sr. Mary of the Compassion, O.P.
As I paused to reflect, I stood on consecrated, holy ground and felt stirred as if deeply moved.
Now that the nuns are no longer a presence in the cloister steps have been taken for protection of premises: police have been assigned to patrol, surveillance cameras installed, and interior measures of security set in place as well as dogs.
Segments of the community have made it known that any attempt to demolish the building will be met with strident opposition. People have said that the Blue Chapel is a holy place with a definite ineffable and mystical presence that touches all who grace its threshold.
We are reminded in the Holy Bible that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but spiritual. The prayers of the all who visit this blog are coveted in earnest. May our Father's will be done and may the ever Blessed Virgin watch over the Blue Chapel which was conceived as a place of "perpetual" Rosary.
May the spirit of the late Sister Mary of the Compassion, O.P continue to pervade the Blue Chapel and be a tender reminder of the service she and and the other prayerful nuns, and faithful priests provided in the Blue Chapel.
As a former minister and "history detective" now in Union City, I look to our Lord for guidance and prayer for His direction in terms of whether the Blue Chapel should be nominated for listing in the NJ state and national register of historic places.

Anonymous said...

Dear Anon,

I was a frequent visitor to the Chapel. Do you know if they still have masses there and if my friends in the gift shop are still there?

God Bless!

Esther said...

Marian, what precious memories you must have. Thank you for sharing that with me.

BTW, we plan on attending the May 13th day at the Blue Army Shrine. Will you be going?

A, thank you for sharing that with us.

Anonymous said...

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Esther G. said...

Of course, I will pray for David. Please contact She has a beautiful site and will be happy to pray for your intentions. I already wrote her about it.
God bless,

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