Friday, May 13, 2011

Final Vows

where to begin?  Allow me to introduce you to my cousin, Sandra Nelly Garcia.  We call her Nelly :)

Back in the day, she made her journey from Mexico to the US and lived with my parents and I for a while.  During that time, we really got to know each other.  Many, many memories of the places we went, the things we did and the times we shared :)

In mid March, she had a mass where she took her final vows, making the full commitment to being a nun.  Here's a link to a great story with a lot of info that the paper wrote while she was in town.

It was pretty neat, just days before my mom called to tell me of the date this was all to take place, Oprah did a segment on the whole thing which allowed me to understand a little bit about what it was all about.  If you'd like to check that out, you can click here.

Nelly got to be in Modesto, where there's a convent, for just under 3 weeks.  During that time, while we were limited, we were able to have family time with her there on several occasions.  In many cases, she was meeting children for the first time, seeing many faces she hadn't seen in years (I think it'd been about 10 years since I'd seen her) and just enjoying being around everyone.  
She LOVED being around all the little ones and holding the babies!!
On the 2 Sundays that she was here, they had potlucks and open family time.  She opened up this time for people to ask away any of the questions they had about her decision, life, what it's all about...basically "ask me and I'll tell you" time since so many of us don't know too much about it.  

...and there was some entertainment as well :)  Tio Beto brought his horse!
and my grandma, aka Lita, was practicing her stretch dancing that she learned :)
For the Giants fans out there...having Nelly wear Alex's hat ALMOST got him to smile ;0
Then, the day it was all about...The Final Vow Mass
Tio Fernando & Tia Amparo (her parents)
one of her sisters, Alma and brother Nando
They decorated the altar
and the Bishop was the one to officiate the mass
she was filled with such joy!  Her smile was from ear to ear ;0
Of course, being the unofficial photogs, we got to get a pic with her ;0
...before we knew it, the days had flown by and it was time to say goodbye...on our 'goodbye' visit, she thought she'd pretend to be escaping to see what the other sisters would do :)
taking her to the airport went from a 1 car (4 seater) trip to a 15 passenger van that got filled up!!
...and she's ready to go!!
some of our happy travelers ;)
of course, Diana was the ring leader and driver ;)
the airport was a little nerve wracking for everyone ;)
after she checked in we all sat around and played with the kids a bit...
but then, it was time for the FINAL goodbyes...and everyone just stood one wanting to go first
we watched her completely off until we couldn't see her walk anymore
and then we found her plane!  But were sad to know she didn't know we were still watching for her
apparently we wanted to make a day of it, so then it was off to the pier for lunch :)
and Emma had her first trip to SF Fisherman's Wharf!
we walked around for a quick bit and took the kids to take a pic at the Rainforest Cafe ;)
...that was quite the 'wrap up' quick version there :)  There were some pics I uploaded that I didn't post. If you're interested, click here.  

Nelly went back to Mexico where she gathered her (few) things and she's now in Italy where she'll be studying on her focus, which she'll then teach to other sisters in her next 'home' convent.

1 comment:

Cathy/Nani said...

An amazing story in pictures. ;)
Love her smile.
That must have been neat family time with her. ;) Lita and her stretching cracked me up..she is so sweet.