The other day Sister Julie and I were reflecting on the passing of Sister Nirmala Joshi, the former superior general of the Missionaries of Charity who succeeded Blessed Mother Teresa. Sister Julie mentioned that had made a retreat with the Missionaries, and then suddenly excused herself from our conversation. She returned holding a Missionaries of Charity prayer book that she had received during her retreat with the sisters.
As I thumbed through the book, I desired to learn more about Sister Nirmala's life, so I did what any curious millennial would do: I Googled her! Sister Nirmala joined the Missionaries of Charity in 1958 shortly after becoming Catholic. Inspired by Mother Teresa's humanitarian work, Sister Nirmala dedicated her life to caring for the very sick and very poor. (source)
In addition to caring for others, Sister Nirmala also cultivated a deep prayer life; she was known to spend every Thursday in prayer, and ran the order's contemplative wing since 1979. The following prayer is from the Missionaries of Charity prayer book, and I think it speaks beautifully to the mission of Sister Nirmala:
"We love you with our whole heart and soul, because you, O God, are most worthy of all our love./We desire to love you as the Blessed do in heaven ... / We also love our neighbor for your sake as we love ourselves." (Act of Love, Morning Prayer pg. 5)
I like to imagine the prayers in the book to be the fuel that kept Sister Nirmala going as she went about her daily life serving those around her. Sister Nirmala spent her life loving her neighbor and living as an example of what it means to love as Jesus loved.
As you think of Sister Nirmala, what prayers or inspirations come to mind that you turn to when you're in need of some inspirational "fuel"?