The Motherhouse Road Trips are a great adventure for Sister Julie and me! We meet lots of new people and hear their stories about ministry, vocation, discernment, and even alpacas. The trips are not only physical journeys but also incredible spiritual journeys. Here's some fuel for thought from the Motherhouse Road Trips thus far. Hope you can join us online for the next road trip -- this Friday to the Sisters of the Humility of Mary in Villa Maria, Pennsylvania. 

Sister Michele Fisher, CSFN
Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth, Des Plaines, Illinois, August 21, 2013

GPS God: It is possible [to miss God's call], I think. But it’s not just a one-time call – God is constantly calling us, every day, every minute of the day. There’s never a time when God isn’t calling us, when  God isn’t inviting us. So sometimes we do miss it, but God doesn’t stop if we miss that particular call. God will call again and again  and again. Sometimes we resist it, sometimes we flat-out run away from it. And God says, “You know what, that’s ok.” God is like a giant GPS. When you go the wrong way, that patient little GPS says, “Recalculating.” God is the same way with us. Even when we go in a direction that might not have been the direction God dreamed for us, it’s ok because God will recalculate and call where we are right now. (Ask Sister podcast #145)

Sister Durstyne Farnan, OP
Adrian Dominican Sisters, Adrian, Michigan, August 26, 2013

Preaching the gospel with our lives:  Part of being a Dominican is the desire for each woman to find her own gifts and how she’s going to share those with the people of God--how she’s going to be a preacher, which is what Dominicans are.... It could be as a nurse, as a teacher, as a pastoral care person, as a chaplain, as a first grade teacher, as an administrator – there are so many different ways to be about the gospel and sharing the gospel. It’s very important in this day and age that young people realize that they are so important and their gifts are so important. They are individuals, and individuals make up the community.... And community is about fostering the giftedness of each member. (Praying with the Sisters podcast #731)

Sister Teresita Richards, SND
Sisters of Notre Dame, Toledo, Ohio, August 29, 2013

Everyday discernment:  Before you get to the “big” discernment, it helps to do everyday “little” discernment – to notice the blessing  that’s in front of you, the way God entered your day.... It’s like practice before the big “I need an answer” time. Otherwise , how will I know when God is answering the giant question I have? Being a person of prayer and discernment on a daily basis – [reflecting on] what’s the best thing and worst thing that happened today and where was God in the middle of all of it – means you’re practicing, and you’ll recognize God’s whispers and when God yells to get your attention…. There’s also the concept of wearing the decision for the day. If you’re trying to answer “Should I do this or that,” mentally make the note, “I’m going to do it, I’m going to become a sister,” then notice what’s happening inside of you. Are you terrified, full of joy, full of angst…? And then the next day, wear the opposite decision. (Praying with the Sisters podcast #734)

Sister Hannah Corbin, SP, and Sister Arrianne Whittaker, SP
Sisters of Providence,  Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, September 5, 2013

If you feel called to religious life, what to do?   Sister Hannah: Being in conversation and dialog with people who are sisters … spending time with them…getting to know them and how they live their life--for me, that’s when I started to have this feeling, “Wow, this kind of feels right—this might work!”  Sister Arrianne: A lot of communities [offer] experiences where people can have an extended period of time--both Sister Hannah and I were volunteers with the community. As you go along in the journey, and if you’re still finding that the answer is “Yes, I need to check this out,” and you’ve found a community that really interests you, maybe begin to think about if you could do that for a month or go for a week even, to have an extended period of time where you’re in conversation with sisters, getting to see first-hand.… When you’re sitting at the breakfast table and see everyone around doing what they’re doing  and see people going to their ministries, you get a better idea of what [religious life] is. (Ask Sister podcast #146)