The real pretty in pink!
For most girls and women in the world, pink has been, at some point in their lives, their favourite colour. I remember the pink phase my daughter went through as a little girl when everything had to be pink, but she eventually, like most of us, grew out of it.
But what if I told you that right now, 318 women living in several different countries around the globe, only wear pink, day in, day out, and will continue doing so for the rest of their lives? These women are called “The Pink Sisters”.
The Sister-Servants of the Holy Spirit of Perpetual Adoration, or the Pink Sisters, as they are known, are cloistered Catholic nuns. Although Catholics nuns traditionally wear black and white habits, these nuns have bold pink habits instead. Actually, they are the only nuns in the world to wear pink!
The order was founded in 1896 in the Netherlands by German Saint Arnold Janssen, who chose the colour pink for the habits because it symbolizes the glowing love of the Holy Spirit.
Cloistered nuns choose to live inside cloisters, far from the noise and distractions of the world, so that they can devote their lives completely to contemplation and perpetual intercessory prayer for the world. “Contemplative life requires seclusion to aid us toward interior silence and recollection,” explains Sister Superior Mary Amatrix.
You may ask yourself what does a cloistered nun do all day. Well, the Pink Sisters have an extremely tight schedule, starting with morning prayer at 5:15 a.m. and continuing with prayers, mass, chants, thanksgiving, petition and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament until lights out at 9:45 p.m. Their entire day is basically devoted to constant prayer that they offer for others, especially for priests and missionaries but also for anyone who needs or asks for their prayers. When there is some free time between prayers, they divide among themselves the work such as answering emails and phone calls and also receiving visits from school students who want to know more about their cloistered lives and the service they provide through prayer for the world. The Sister Superior Mary Matrix explains that “every distress and hardship in the world finds a vigorous response in our prayer.”
And for those who don’t understand the purpose of a cloistered life and think the nuns shouldn’t live separated from the world, the joyful Pink Sisters say that “our enclosure does not alienate us from others. Communing with God and experiencing his tenderness toward us should fill us with sympathetic understanding and love for all. This is manifested primarily in a spiritual giving, which in and through Christ transcends every boundary.”
The Pink Sisters are in The Netherlands, Germany, Poland, Slovakia, USA, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Philippines, India, Indonesia and Africa, so that, in their own words, “from east to west, God’s name may be praised and glorified.”
Isn’t wonderful to know that all around the world, there are so many people willing to devote selflessly their entire lives to helping through constant prayer other people they have never met and most probably, never will?
After knowing of these Pink Sisters who are brave and strong enough to renounce their worldly lives for the greater good, I guess I will never think of pink the same way again!
Photos via Sister-Servants of the Holy Spirit