Sister Judith Frikker (L) receives Sister Taryn Stark's First Vows in Burlingame, CA.
Sister Taryn Stark professed first vows First Vows as a Sister of Mercy on July 14, 2012, surrounded by sisters, family, friends, and associates at the Mercy Chapel in
“The celebration of Taryn’s first vows was a joyful event for the entire Community,” Sister Judith said. “The ceremony reflected Taryn and her lived international experience. It is a sign of hope for the future to have Taryn become a vowed member of the Sisters of Mercy.”
Taryn was ebullient after the profession. Taryn said, “The immense joy I feel inside and from the Mercy Community can only be a grace from God. I couldn’t stop smiling. You could feel the joy and the energy in the room. I felt so loved. Nothing else can affirm your calling more than that.”
The profession ceremony celebrated by Father Richard Menatsi, Executive Director of IMBISA, Inter-Regional Meeting of the Bishops of Southern Africa, included others important to Sister Taryn: novitiate minister Sister Rayleen Giannotti, and witnesses Sister Cindy Kaye and Sister
The ceremony was a step along Sister Taryn’s journey with Mercy which formally began when she became a candidate in 2008, but her Mercy roots are much deeper. “The sisters have always been a presence in my life,” says Taryn. Her mother Ruth was one of the first Burlingame Mercy Associates when the associate group was formed in 1984. Ruth visited the campus frequently, bringing her small daughter with her.
The two traveled all over the world, as Ruth worked with the World Health Organization in
Feeling that she wanted to give her life more deeply to working with the poor, but convinced she was too old for religious life at 30, she Googled the Sisters of Mercy. “I went to a web link that invited me: ‘Come and See for ages 18 to 40!’ It was a huge thing,” she said, “not just a light bulb, but a huge stadium lighting up, knowing I can still do this. I went through a discernment process, but I knew at that moment.”
Taryn began her formal discernment with the sisters in
In 2010 Taryn was in residence at the Institute of the Sisters of Mercy novitiate in
She is delighted that a position as school registrar will be her first ministry as a professed sister beginning this summer. “I really immersed myself in the school,” said Taryn. “It was wonderful to see how the girls know (Mercy founder) Catherine McAuley. You can’t get more Mercy than
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