Sister Ann Case, Order of the Community of the Paraclete, has been a member of Holy Trinity since 1972. She currently serves as a calicifer, and in the Fall of 2013 will co-mentor an Education for Ministry (EfM) group and be part of an on-going conversation on Adult Christian Education at Holy Trinity. Her vestments are distinctive – a bright red scapular over a white hooded alb.
About becoming a Paracletian, Ann says: “I discovered this group online (www.theparacletians.org ). The first thing that attracted me was a statement of their vision. In part this reads, ‘The Paracletian Community: values every person as a unique image of God; welcomes diversity; listens; communicates openly and honestly; encourages all members to participate fully as partners.’ They welcome inquiries from male and female, young and old, married, partnered or single, straight or gay persons.”
The current mission of the Community is “to represent Christ and his Church as members of a supportive Christian fellowship; to bear witness to the Holy Spirit; and to exercise our diverse gifts for ministry in the work of reconciliation, especially among the poor. We seek to deepen our relationships with God and others through life in a Christian community and to discern God’s will for us as uniquely gifted individuals. The Community emphasizes active participation in Community and parish life.”
In December, 2005, Ann applied to be a Friend of the Order. In June of 2009 she took her first yearly vows as a full member of the Order. She discovered that her history with the Education for Ministry (EfM) program here at Holy Trinity helped considerably in this process.
Reading, study, reflection, and discernment will continue throughout her career as a sister.
At the 2013 annual meeting in Yakima, Washington, she took life vows with the Community.
“It was not until after I became a member of the Community that something I had said more than once many years ago came back into my mind. I have, in the past, often wished that Holy Trinity had a ‘habited praying presence’ in their midst – and I said it in just those words. Suddenly I realize we do – and I’m it! I had envisioned someone wafting around, ethereal and wan, in the traditional black habit. I never dreamed it would be me – not wafting, not ethereal, and not wan – just me.
At Holy Trinity I am currently the only habited religious. If I do nothing else as a religious, I am proof that the Episcopal Church has religious orders and communities, and a life as a religious is a possibility within the Episcopal Church. I am a walking … red … billboard for religious life.
Being a Paracletian, wearing the habit, is special and not special, extraordinary and ordinary, unexpected and totally daily. Holy Trinity has been supportive of this journey from the beginning and I am so grateful that I can be ‘Sister Ann’ within this congregation.”