Last year, if someone had told me I would be considering a vocation to
the religious life, I would not have believed it. But now, here I am,
completely sure that I’m hearing the Lord’s call to the religious life
and answering it.
I’ve been a Catholic from birth, baptized
and confirmed in the Faith. I left home when I was eighteen, and came
to the U.K. to get my degree in Nursing, which I’ve just finished. I’ve
always tried to be a good Catholic, attending Sunday Mass and keeping
the Commandments. But I did most of these things out of fear for God. I
didn’t love Him to a great extent. One other thing I lacked was being
sensitive to the presence of the Holy Spirit.
During my years
in University, I’ve come to know God a lot more personally. Being in
this country without my family, I’ve had to go through some financial
and emotional problems but God showed Himself to be a true Father to
me–always answering my prayers and guiding me through my course.
During my final year at University, I started getting drawn to
attending some weekday masses. I was becoming more and more aware of
Christ’s real presence in the Holy Eucharist and I tried to attend Mass
on my free mornings. I also spent increased time in the Blessed
Sacrament in prayer with Jesus.
In the Summer Holidays, I
attended a Catholic Retreat at St. George’s Cathedral Southwark, led by
a team from Potta in India. It was a five-day healing retreat that I
enjoyed very much. It consisted of praise and worship, Mass and
exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, and healing. Some miracles
happened there and some people actually testified to being healed from
This retreat made me realize that there really is the
Holy Spirit dwelling in me, as a confirmed Catholic. John 14:27 says
“If anyone loves me he will keep my word, and my Father will love him,
and we shall come to him and make our home with him.” The Holy Spirit
within us is the Spirit of the Father and the Son who dwells in us to
guide us and direct our paths towards God.
Also I realized
that God is not some vague power from above, ruling over us or
commanding us. I came to see God as love from within. I began to speak
to Him as I would my dear friend. I realized that He wants so much to
have a relationship with me. He loved me first by allowing Himself to
be brutally murdered for my sake, and He loves me still by answering my
prayers, showing me with blessings and graces, forgiving my sins and
leading me on the right path. He expects everything I do for Him to be
out of love for Him, not as though I was being punished. I have also
come to know that the Holy Spirit wants to have real conversations with
us, wants to know my fears, anxieties and worries; He always listens,
in times of trouble I feel consoled and I know He shares my sorrow.
When I feel excited I tell him that too–for example on my first day at
work. He listens and shares my excitement, He loves me more than I’ll
Around this time, I started considering a vocation
to the religious life, relishing the thought that I could actually
speak to God Himself (the Holy Spirit) so often and so spontaneously. I
subscribed to St. Raphael (since re-named Catholic Match) early this
year, and I have no doubt that Archangel Raphael also interceded for
me! Surprisingly, I was considering the vocation quite seriously. Last
month, this website published two useful articles on “Discerning your
vocation”. I read them, printed them out, and continued considering
I‘ve got some good Christian friends (though not
Catholic), and they are okay about my decision but they just feel I
need to do a lot more thinking about it because I may find that I want
to get married later in life. The thing is, I see myself as married
already, although in a different way, and I try to explain it to them.
I do feel very happy about my life presently, and knowing that God’s
love is eternal and will last forever assures me that I will be happy
for the rest of my life.
Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary
certainly played a big part in helping me discern my vocation, because
I try to say my rosary often, daily if possible and I know she’s
brought me closer to God.
The part I find so difficult to
understand is His overwhelming love for me, even when I realize how
selfish and proud my thoughts can be. When my selfish or proud actions
lead me to sin, He shows His love by forgiving me and letting me know
that His love is greater than sin. I’ve also learned that “In all
things God works for good with those who love Him.” Romans 8:28. Hence,
I’m not afraid to look forward to a future with Him–yes I am actually
excited to meet my future. I know it will take a while to enter my
vocation because I need to get my parents’ consent, and I’m still
praying over which particular place God wants me. But I’m confident
that He who called me, in His own time will lead me where He wants me.
For He has my future in the palm of His hand.
Thank you, Lord,
for giving me a vocation to love and serve you for the rest of my life.
Sometimes I worry about my future, and think it may be hard or
difficult for me. I realize that times of trials will come and I trust
that You won’t leave me alone, but you will guide and help me on this
narrow path. Thank you for the gift of the Holy Spirit present within
me to guide and direct me in your ways. Thank you Archangel Raphael for
interceding for me. Thank you Jesus for dying for me. Please let my
life be like a love song to Your heart. Amen.