2015 grant recipient candidates to religious life
Sister Christina Chavez, C.D.P.
Congregation of Divine Providence
What made choose religious life?
I remember asking some sisters, “How do you know what you are doing with your life?“ and they said that they were still discerning – it blew my mind.
I was interested in finding out what it takes to become a nun. I googled it from my cell phone and the Vision Vocation Match website came up first. That's when the journey began.
What was the turning point that made you consider becoming a nun?
I had this opportunity to go on this mission trip to Haiti. I spent a week there living with the clergy and the religious sisters and brothers of that order. I felt so much joy and beauty in their life, which was being used completely to serve other people. I became so inspired by how they lived and thought maybe I could have a fulfilling life, too, living in this way.
Sister Boram Lee, F.M.A.
Daughters of Mary Help of Christians
Sister Eilis McCulloh, H.M.
Sisters of the Humility of Mary
Villa Maria, PA
What would you tell someone
on the fence about religious life?
I would tell them what someone told me: “Just try it.” You have at minimum of six years between candidacy and final vows, so there is time to test the waters. Among the sisters in my community, we range from 29 to 100 years old, and we are a community – we laugh, we are filled with joy we have a good time while being centered in God, all living with same purpose. There’s nothing like it.
What made you begin to consider religious life?
I was very focused on my education – it was everything really. But as I was getting ready to graduate from law school, there was this God-shaped hole in my life. I decided to go to Calcutta to volunteer and be where Mother Teresa started her ministry. I began to sense I really liked this and wanted to explore religious life. When I came back I began to discern more seriously.
Sister Graciella Colon, S.C.C.
formerly Cialinett Colon
Sisters of Christian Charity
Sister Katherine Frazier, O.P.
Adrian Dominican Sisters
What are the major differences between your life as an academic and your new life in the church?
As an academic, you are trying to understand things and their roots. In religious life, it feels more like jumping off a cliff because I don’t know what the world or my congregation will look like in 30 years. For me the journey of religious life is about putting all my faith in God. If he’s truly calling me to this life then he believes I can have an effect on bringing this congregation into the future – and he can bring us all closer to the kingdom of God.
What is the most surprising part about adjusting to the life of the sisters?
I thought sisters would be lonely. I didn’t see the role community played. Now as a candidate living in a community I know sisters are never alone. There is that sisterly and spiritual bond. They are not behind closed doors just praying. They pray a lot, but they are out fighting for social justice and educating and saving and changing the world.
Sister Ana Gonzalez, O.P.
Dominican Sisters of Peace
Sister Margaret Uche, O.P.
Dominican Sisters of Peace
What would you like to say to benefactors who made this grant possible?
I would like to thank them so much for this grant, which will help me continue my vocation because my student loans were one of the issues I had when entered religious life. I worried I wouldn’t get in. This grant helped me make that dream come true.