When a young woman emphatically says, “I would never want to be a Sister, “ I respond that she may really have a vocation after all, because that was my absolute conviction as a child, teenager and college student. I was a “C.C.D.” child and never had the opportunity to meet religious and see them as persons. Their lives seemed rather uninteresting to me.
While a dance major at the University of California Irvine, someone very close to me disclosed her plan to join a religious community, the Society Devoted to the Sacred Heart. Despite all the objections (and misinformation) I could offer about convent life, she entered anyway. I found myself dutifully attending the monthly Visiting Day for families and friends. As I observed the Sacred Heart Sisters, I was struck to see how fully they lived life; they radiated joy, apostolic zeal and exhibited love for people and for one another. I had thought that Sisters gave up the possibility of love in their lives. I discovered that the opposite was true—their love was warm and person-centered, it flowed from a personal love for Jesus.
Obviously, God had a plan that I could not have foreseen. My first thought of becoming a Sister was shocking for me. I tried to tell Jesus that I wasn’t the “type,” but the desire grew. His initiative came to realization and in the fall of 1974 I became a postulant in the Society Devoted to the Sacred Heart.
Through the years, God has been very busy, forming me to be a reflection of His own Heart. A true sign of His power is that He can somehow work with an imperfect instrument. March of 2007 marked the 25th anniversary of my Final Vows. As the years pass by, I find that I am more and more fulfilled and immersed in life. I have learned that what is most important is not my work, but rather the quality of loving presence that I bring to everything I do—and because of this, I am very fulfilled in my work! My vows allow me to minister to the People of God with an undivided heart (chastity); in freedom and confidence (obedience); and simplicity (poverty). What better life can there be than to give to others the gift I received—the opportunity to meet Love Incarnate?