Getting to Know the Apostles - Week 68
Posted August 8, 2010
When did you enter the Congregation of the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus?
I joined our community as a postulant on August 26, 2002 but had the opportunity to do a pre-postulate (a time of discernment) in the fall of 2001.
How did you come to know the sisters?
I met a few of our sisters at the National Catholic Youth Conference that was being held in St. Louis, MO. However I really fell in love with our Congregation through the writings of our Foundress, Mother Clelia Merloni.
What have been your ministries and where have you served?
- 2001- Clelian Heights, Greensburg, PA (assisting in the classrooms)
- 2002- Sacred Heart Convent, Bronx, NY (postulate, study)
- 2003- Our Lady of Pompeii, New York, NY (student teaching, study); Sacred Heart Convent, Bronx, NY (novitiate, study)
- 2004- Mount Sacred Heart, Hamden, CT (novitiate, juniorate)
- 2005- St. Rita School, Hamden, CT (resource room, 5th grade religion)
- 2006- St. Joseph School, Shelton, CT (7th grade religion); St. Raphael School, Bridgeport, CT (1st grade religion, 3rd and 4th grade math)
- 2007- Generalate, Rome, Italy (international juniorate, study, Pre-K English)
- 2008+ Santa Maria School, Bronx, NY (1st grade, middle school choir)
This is my third year teaching first grade at Santa Maria School in the Bronx, NY. I also continue to work with the middle school choir.
What has been a special blessing that you have received in this or any of your ministries?
Each ministry has blessed me in a different way, but I have to say there is a common joy that I have experienced in every mission- I LOVE to witness when someone accomplishes something that they never thought possible! The excitement on their faces always makes me happy and grateful to God.
Would you like to share a “joyful moment” or a special grace that you have received in any of your mission assignments?
There have been many joyful moments, but one that jumps out was the year spent in Rome living with our sisters from all over the world. It was a privilege and a grace to experience our diverse cultures and yet our common spirit as daughters of Mother Clelia.
What hobbies or interests do you have when you are not working in your ministry?
I enjoy reading, writing, music, and sports.
What has been the grace of living in community with other sisters?
Each sister has her own unique gifts and something she offers the community. In addition to our local communities, there is also a strength and support in belonging to a larger, international community of sisters. I find it very encouraging and inspiring to know that there are Apostles throughout the world striving to be faithful daughters of Mother Clelia and of the Church.
Have there been any challenges in living out your call as a religious sister?
Each vocation has its own challenges, but I find that most of my challenges arise when I take my eyes off of Christ and rely on myself.
How do you spread devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus?
I certainly try to spread devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus in school by teaching the students about Him and His unconditional love for each person. We have pictures of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the classroom and often pray, “Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place my trust in You… Sacred Heart of Jesus, I believe in Your Love for me.” Most importantly, I allow students to develop their own relationship with Christ by providing opportunities to pray. Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus can only be based on a real relationship with Him.
Do you have any other special devotions? How did this (these) devotion(s) come to be?
In addition to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Mother Clelia, I have a great devotion to many Saints including St. Benedict, St. Joseph, St. Peter, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Teresa of Avila, and St. Therese. I also pray often to John Paul the Great and, of course, our Blessed Mother.
If Mother Clelia were alive today what would you like to say to her?
I often thank Mother Clelia for leading me to our Congregation. I ask for her continued direction and presence among us.