July 1, 2015

It is in giving of ourselves that we receive.

Summer is a busy time in the convent. Between retreats, vacations, homevisit, feast day preparations, the Community is very active. As a student Sister I am available during the summertime to cover for Sisters who are on retreat etc. This is a great gift as I am able to get to know my Sisters and get to experience how my Sisters make the merciful love of Christ visible. By the time I head back to my convent in Ohio, I will have served in seven different convents!

My current location is in Lincoln, Nebraska. Here our Sisters serve at Bonacum House which is a home for retired priests. During my time here one of the priests celebrated his 70th anniversary of ordination. Wow! Seventy years is an impressive witness of fidelity. This is a record for the Diocese of Lincoln. While Father's memory is showing signs of his age (95), his love of God and his vocation continue to shine. When I asked him how he would describe his priesthood, he responded with one word – fulfillment. Later he added that it is a gift from God. As we continued talking he began encouraging me in my own vocation. Father said that through my service as a Sister, my own hands will participate in the work of God. If I do that, he said I will do great things for Him. As I felt tears come to my eyes I knew that I was not sent to Lincoln just to serve the priests. I was sent here to receive.

During a homily that another priest gave to the Sisters he told us to ask ourselves what animates our lives. Immediately the answer “love of God” came to my mind. Regardless of where our summer schedules lead us, we will encounter the love of God. This summer has been filled with many reminders of His love for me. In particular, my time in Lincoln has reminded me of the beauty of my vocation. Christ's love for me as His Bride is what animates my life. I gave my yes almost five years ago, and I have learned that it is in 'giving of ourselves that we receive.'

- Sister Teresa Maria, FSGM

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