A large crowd turned up for the launch of a stylish new film about the Tyburn Nuns and the growth of their order around the world.
They signalled their approval of Tyburn Convent Gloria Deo, a 90-minute documentary by Michael Luke Davies, a former West End fashion and beauty photographer, with a prolonged round of applause following the screening.
The audience of more than 100 people, packed into the martyrs’ crypt in Tyburn Convent, Marble Arch, London, for the event, later snapped up nearly all the copies of the DVD that were put on sale at the back of the room.
The launch marked the completion of a project that involved some five months of filming in Britain, Ireland, Italy, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Australia and New Zealand, and a process of editing that lasted nearly a year.
The film offers an authentic view of life in a cloistered, contemplative community based on adoration of the Holy Eucharist and the Rule of St Benedict.
Mother Xavier McMonagle, Mother General of the nuns, whose formal name is the Adorers of the Sacred Heart of Jesus of Montmartre, said she was delighted with the result.
“I hope that it serves to inform the general public that in the Catholic Church the monastic contemplative life is one of vibrant, joyous and holy dedication to God, a life well worth living – not only for the nuns themselves, but for all those people who are touched by glimpsing something of this life of hidden, godly dedication,” she said.
“I would see this film as having its place in restoring the religious faith in religious life itself today, in families and schools as part of promoting the value of monastic life, a tool for leading people to prayer and also for promoting vocations to the religious and monastic life in general.”
She added: “Finally, I feel strongly that it will serve as an introduction to the holiness of the foundress of the Tyburn Nuns – Mother Marie Adele Garnier and her charism of Eucharistic Adoration.”
Mr Davies, who attended the launch, said he was “moved to tears many times by the beauty of what I was filming”.
“It was an incredible experience I shall never forget for the rest of my life,” he said. “The things I have seen and the moments I have shared with these beautiful religious people I will keep with me for ever.”
The film, priced £15, can be purchased from the Tyburn Convent either directly from the website (Tyburnconvent.org.uk) or by ringing Mother Hildegarde on 020 7723 7262.