Looking back on all the countless graces I have received from our Lord, I am amazed that day after day I am continuing to receive grace after grace. Getting to know the Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon was one of the greatest graces I received from the Lord. I definitely recognized God’s call as I started my journey in the Religious Life many years ago, and I more clearly recognized it when I came to one of the “Come and See” days of the Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon in 2009.
My awareness of my vocation grew over a period of many years. I was born in Vietnam, and when I was in the fourth or fifth grade, a group of friends and I spent many hours with the Sisters of our parish helping them cut hosts. After all the work was done we enjoyed a treat of having the bread crumbs; these were very happy times.
Though my vocation was growing within me, I hadn’t thought seriously about it until I graduated from High School. I was almost 33 when I earnestly considered religious life with the Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon. Like St. Augustine, “Late have I loved you.” The three days I spent with the Sisters really struck me. Even though many of the Sisters were older and in their 70s, I saw in them with young hearts that are very friendly. When I came to the “Come and See” retreat they welcomed me warmly and with happiness. I believe that God has chosen me and He will always be with me.
Having lived almost five years now with the Sisters I more clearly recognize that God is always beside me, guiding me and helping me in each stage of life. I am more than happy to share what I have received from God with the people with whom I work. My vocation is from the Lord and nothing is mine. I graduated with a Masters degree from the School of Social Work last spring and am now serving in ministry at Maryville Nursing Home. God’s plans for me are a mystery and though I will never be able to understand them fully, I am very thankful to God for the gift of choosing me to be His own.