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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

A Gentle Call

This Thursday I am going to talk about my vocation to the students at Pace High School and I am thrilled to be able to do this. I am sure God is still calling young people to follow him in many ways, and religious life is one way to know that you are consecrated to God and to his service in a special way. It means responding to His love and putting God first and at the center of your life.

My own vocation was a gentle call. I first really thought about entering a convent when I was in my first year of high school and making my first retreat; since we were a boarding school, we began our retreat on Monday night and kept silence until Friday morning.
The desks in our study hall all faced the windows or the wall and we had a Jesuit who gave us talks during the three days. One talk was on vocations and I began to think that maybe I would like to be a nun and teach others about God. It was just a thought but I began to be conscious of a desire to be with God for all those who never thought of Him or thanked Him. I began to make short visits to the Chapel to talk to God and this is the way God led me to really consider giving up the life I thought I wanted to go see if the Society of the Sacred Heart would accept me. I entered for the Feast of the Sacred Heart in June after two years of college; I just had my nineteenth birthday and thought that maybe I would be sent home by September and so would be able to rejoin my classmates.
I knew the Religious of the Sacred Heart but had no idea of what religious life was all about and only a vague idea that nuns took three vows. I just had liked what I saw and thought the nuns that taught me were united to Jesus when not actually teaching - that was a big disappointment to discover that union with God was not something that happened automatically because one entered the convent! However, I have never regretted entering and count my vocation as a great gift from God.

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