Sixth Sunday of Lent
March 28, 2021
Andrea Westkamp, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virginia
Gertrude – Jesus’ Heart
We are concluding our Lenten reflections on the Benedictine Women from our Monastery window. The saint to the very right in our window is Saint Gertrude (1256 – 1302). You will notice the heart she is holding in her hand.
At the age of four, she entered the monastery school at the monastery of St. Mary at Helfta. Gertrude was given to the care of Saint Mechtild of Hackeborn and joined the monastic community in 1266. It is clear from her own writings that she received a thorough education in a variety of subjects.
In 1281, at the age of twenty-five, she experienced the first of a series of visions that continued throughout her life. Gertrude devoted herself strongly to personal prayer and meditation, and began writing spiritual treatises for the benefit of her monastic sisters. Gertrude became one of the great mystics of the 13th century. She is well known for her Spiritual Exercises and her devotion to the sacred heart of Jesus.
Gertrude was drawn to the heart of Jesus.
Jesus' heart holds love -
love for us.
Love that ultimately led him to his passion, his cross.
The heart and the cross are intimately connected.
As we are approaching Holy Week, connect with the heart of Jesus, with his love for you and the world.
Sister Andrea Westkamp is a member of Saint Benedict Monastery in Bristow, VA. Currently, she is serving as subprioress, canonical treasurer, oblate director and spiritual director. Her background is in pastoral counseling, spiritual direction and early childhood education. She enjoys long walks, artwork, reading mysteries. Her passion is exploring the depth of the Rule of Benedict for our times.