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Solemn Profession as a Hermit of the Diocese of Nottingham,     Holy Rood Church, Market Rasen 18 November 2006

This article, written by Frank Goulding, first appeared in the Catholic News of the Diocese of Nottingham (January 2006


The Mass at Holy Rood Church on November 18th was truly a happy day as well as a solemn moment by Rachel Denton supported by her family and friends.

A large congregation heard Bishop Malcolm speak of a unique occasion but one which could catch on.  This was believed to be the first Solemn Profession of a Hermit in the Nottingham Diocese but the Bishop felt there was something of a hermit in all of our lives as we choose how to retreat from the stressful life that many of us seem to lead.  He commended the commitment to prayer that Rachel was undertaking and then led the Rite of Profession and the Liturgy of Saints.  Rachel then read out the Profession.  Finally the Bishop presented the family ring as a sign of consecration and the cross with words adapted from the Student Cross Prayer.  The ring was Rachel’s Grand mother’s and the crucifix came from America.

Five years of serious preparation as a hermit have now been completed by Rachel and as she moves on in her very special life, the occasion was also memorable for the many people who have given her both spiritual and practical assistance.  The musical troope in conjunction with the organ and a beautiful Order of Service incorporating illustrations from the Manuscript of St Cuthbert also brought an artistic feature to a day which will be long remembered by all who were present.  Rachel Denton promised us all her love and prayers and there is no doubt as to who was the happiest lady in Market Rasen on November 18th.

A few pages from the service booklet