“To me commitment means to be dedicated. It means that I am willing to let go. It is saying ‘YES’ each day to all the Lord asks of me. Commitment is trying to be faithful to what the Lord calls me to.” (Sister Carol Jean Kuntz)
“The Lord called me through the contact, influence and example of other
people. As I worked with the Sisters, I became aware of their kindness, joyfulness and prayer life as they went about caring for the sick. Little by little I found myself falling in love with God and I felt His presence drawing me to religious life. At 18 I made the decision to be part of this community.”
(Sister Marguerite Guarneri)
Vocation Story 1...
Sister Dorothy's Story
It may sound strange, but I relate my call to religious life to my birth. I am the fifth child in a family of 8 siblings. I was born weighing only 2 ½ pounds. My grandmother came to our house and assisted in the delivery. When the doctor arrived, he told my mother I would never live so just keep me comfortable. Both my mother and grandmother were determined I would live. They began to feed me breast milk with the aide of a medicine dropper, massaged my little body with castor oil, wrapped me in cotton, put me in a shoe box and pushed me under the living room stand-up heater. I survived as you can see! On different occasions after that my mother would say that God kept me alive because God had something special for me to do in life.
As a child I took note of the many Sisters in our parish, St. Cecilia’s, Harvey, ND. I went to the grade school where I was taught by Sisters and had a tonsillectomy at St. Aloisius Hospital where the Sisters cared for me. So perhaps it is pretty natural that at five or six years old when a visitor came to see my dad and asked me, “Little girl, what are you going to be when you grow up,” I immediately responded, “a Sister.” When I was in the sixth grade I began to attend daily Mass. I don’t recall why I did this, but upon reflection later in life, I see it as a sign God was leading me in a special way. I was able to go to high school at St. Catherine’s, Valley City, ND, where I was again being educated by the same Sisters I saw at home in Harvey, the Sisters of Mary of the Presentation. It was from Valley City that I journeyed to Spring Valley, IL, where I entered the Community’s formation program. After three years in the initial formation program, I made profession of vows on July 23.Throughout my life I have had various ministries which have all been challenging and interesting. Each, in its own way, has helped me to grow personally and professionally, thus preparing me for future service in the Church and the works of my Congregation.I have mentioned above various ways God had spoken to me in my life. Over the span of my 47 years as a Sister, I have identified three other factors that influenced my decision to choose this way of life. The first is that my parents were always very respectful toward the Sisters and priests and, through this respect, relayed an awareness of the presence of God. Secondly, the Sisters who taught me showed care and devotion which spoke to me of God’s care. And thirdly, my home parish always had many people in attendance at daily Mass. I was in awe of how important God was in the lives of these people.
I am grateful for God’s call. My mother’s words were true. God has had something special for me to do in life. And so God has for each person. Each of us must take the time to seek and to find what that is.