Farewells aren’t easy, but they are beautiful and love-filled. Number Six I has had to experience a number of these. Cecilia posted beautiful words after her departure:
Friendship is one of the truest joys of my life. I didn’t know that when I met a girl in ballet class when I was 7 years old that she would be a part of my life forever. That girl has grown up to be my most beautiful and incredible friend Maria. As this week you enter your new home pursuing your vocation as Norbertine I am struggling to imagine how I can do life without your presence in my daily life, but the truth is that I use the gifts that you have given me on a daily basis and they will last a lifetime. Thank-you first for showing me what true friendship is. Your love is constant and your support unfailing. Thank-you for showing me how to love and be friends with sisters. Without your example I would not have the relationship with either of mine that I do. Thank you for the love, laughter, and light you have brought to my life for the last 14 years. Change is hard and this is a pretty major one, but I rejoice for and with you that you have found your home, and I pray that you will grow nearer to Christ through this new adventure. There is a poem I love written by a special women that precisely describes my feelings this week.
"I don't think I've ever known
A love this pure, this plainly shown.
If all my hopes and dreams would end,
This I would know: you are my friend.
When I get tired of day-to-day
And dreads and fears obstruct my way,
Through all that life's worst storms may send,
At least I know you are my friend.
Your every laugh and hug and joke and tears
Remain with me across the years.
And if our lives cruel fate may rend,
Still I will know you are my friend.
If you grow weak and need relief,
Some shelter from your pain and grief,
I'd go for you to any end.
I hope you know I am your friend."
Maria Braga-Henebry 2016