Just a few days into 2018, on Jan. 3, Sister Mary Thomas of the Holy Name of Jesus, OP, made her solemn profession of vows at the Dominican Monastery of St. Jude in Marbury, Ala. She shares a sacred vocation with her twin brother, Deacon Dominic Rankin, who will be ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois on May 26.
Sister Mary Thomas is one of three children of Mark and Stephanie Rankin of Quincy. As a child she always wanted to be a nun, and when she learned of the Dominican nuns during her senior year of homeschool high school, she immediately wrote the monastery: “I think your life is for me!”
First Friday devotions at Quincy parishes St. Boniface and St. Anthony of Padua and the experience of Liturgy at St. Rose of Lima Parish, also in Quincy, helped foster her vocation. Sister Mary Thomas joined the Dominican nuns in November 2011 after a year at John Wood Community College in Quincy and completed six years of monastic formation prior to her solemn vows. As one of the cloistered nuns, she rarely leaves the monastery grounds.
Sister Mary Thomas made her solemn profession in the hands of the prioress, Mother Mary of the Precious Blood of Jesus, OP.
Deacon Rankin was on holiday break from his studies at the Pontifical North American College in Rome and he sang the Gospel at the profession Mass. Their younger brother Alexander Rankin and many cousins and friends served.
Archbishop Thomas J. Rodi of the Archdiocese of Mobile celebrated the profession Mass, joined by many priest friends of the community.