Country of origin: New Zealand
Since I was small, I always knew that sisters had a special place in God’s heart. Often I would think of what I would do with my life and I knew that I wanted to do something for God, for I thought, “God loves us so much that he wants to be loved in return.” I felt that by becoming a sister, I could give him all that I am and all that I have. I am from a large family – we are fourteen children and my parents had a great respect for religious life. They never influenced us either way, although I knew that they saw a religious vocation as a great blessing on the family if God chose one of their children.
I had a special attraction for the Blessed Sacrament and sometimes I would go into churches and pray and wonder about this God who was so humble and so little in the Holy Host. After my nursing training, I travelled for two years. During that time, the call of God became stronger and I knew that I had to investigate it.
I have a lovely story of how I met up with these sisters. What attracted me most was the centrality of the Eucharistic life, the spirit of joy, simplicity and international flavour. I can truly say that I bless the day that I decided to give my life more fully to Jesus.
A favourite passage of mine is from Psalm 16. It was the verse I had on my first profession card and then on my 25th jubilee card. The words, “You will show me the path of life, the fullness of joy in your presence; at your right hand happiness forever” are a promise of God to me and they have come true.
People sometimes ask me if religious life is difficult. I reply, “There are moments of struggle. However, I truly believe that in every struggle that I have faced and overcome, I have felt a greater joy in the service of God.” I believe that our life has enormous value and every little thing done for God is precious in his eyes.
I have also been able to travel and live in other countries since I joined the sisters. I spent 5 years in Italy and nearly 30 years in Australia. I have been in Ireland since May 2006 and I have found a new family where I am welcomed and loved. What is even more precious is the fact that I am also able to welcome others and to love them. So … I left my own natural family for Jesus. He has given in return a much larger family, one that reaches all over the world!