The Missions were never a general calling for me, but when I was a first year novice I did receive a call from God to go to Sweden. Never mind that we had no house there or that I had never thought about Sweden at all and had no contact with that country. The call was specific, not just to any mission country where we might send personnel. I told this to the mistress of novices and was told that we don’t send novices to the missions, and that we did not have a house there in Sweden. I replied that the house or lack of one had not been part of the invitation, which I had accepted.
My sense that God was calling me to the msns began when I was in 1st grade. We were reading a Holy Childhood magazine about the ‘pagan babies’ in China. When we finished, I knew that God was calling me to be a missionary in Africa. It was a conviction that never left me. When, as a senior in high school, I spoke to Rev Mer Barry about entering the Society, I told her this. Her response was simply, “If God wants you to go to the missions, he’ll send you.” Studying for a doctorate in anthropology, I chose to do my fieldwork in Africa.
Unlike Philippine, I never had the ambition to go to "foreign lands, or convert anyone." What became my passion, my life's work and my Rebecca moment happened in a quite unexpected way. I went to Cambridge Hospital, one of the Harvard Medical School teaching hospitals, to do a post-doctoral internship in psychology.
Two hundred years after Philippine arrived in North America, I arrived at a new frontier of my own. My journey was shorter than hers – a short airplane flight from Ottawa, Canada to the United Nations (UN) in New York City. And I did not dream the way that Philippine did of coming to the new world in which I find myself. But, like her, I was strongly drawn by the Spirit in other ways.
In 2011, I began, unexpectedly, to experience a call to return to ministry with Mexican-Americans, which I had done in the 1980s, followed by over 20 years offering therapeutic massage, first in a private practice, and then to our elder Sisters in Albany, New York. Since the call was gentle and persistent, I felt it needed testing. So I told Jesus I would do nothing about it until he opened some doors, and if He did, I would walk through them! Two months later, I met Marimer Cepeda rscj at an immigration conference in Washington, DC. Marimer, who is an herbalist/acupuncturist and holis
In 1992, I started working at Rachel’s Women’s Center in Washington, DC. I had a dream but it took a few years to know where I would be going. I read the book, “We Make the Road by Walking”, by Paulo Friere.