In this Random Nun Clip, the Salesian Sisters talk about life before and after entering religious life. Hear the full Ask Sister episode AS213 at aNunsLife.org. Sister Maxine with Sister Mary and Sister Guerline.
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LEFT: Sr. Mary Jackson was born in upstate New York, one of five children. An amazing conversion experience led her to a religious vocation. She found the Salesian Sisters online. Sr. Mary professed her vows 12 years ago. On that day, she realized that God's dream and her dreams were a perfect match. Currently ministering as the principal of Villa Madonna Catholic School in Tampa, Sr. Mary is passionate for Jesus and young people. She can be found in the classroom, on the basketball court and in the chapel, always with the young. Her prayerful and energetic way are fueled by her relationship with Jesus. On a daily basis, she works with parents and their children, as they celebrate life and grow through difficulties that life presents.
RIGHT: Sr. Guerline Joseph was born in Haiti and grew up in New Jersey. As a child, she desired to be many things, including a flight attendant, a restauranteur and a professional athlete. At the same time, she always had a heart of service for others. She connected with the Salesian Sisters through a vocation magazine called VISION (vocationnetwork.org) and since then has found fulfillment in her relationship with Jesus through her mission with young people. Currently, Sr. Guerline, who is seven years professed, spends her day ministering to hundreds of young people, teaching them dance and hanging out at the Salesian Youth Center/Boys and Girls Club after school. She enjoys running, cleaning, and celebrating birthdays.
SISTER MAXINE: I am Sister Maxine and we are here on a Motherhouse Road Trip in Tampa, Florida and we are delighted to be joined by Sister Guerline Joseph.
SISTER GUERLINE: Good afternoon.
SISTER MAXINE: And Sister Mary Jackson.
SISTER MARY: Hello, welcome all.
SISTER MAXINE: With us here in the audience are students from Villa Madonna and joining us by livestream and in the chat room, students from the Academy of Our Lady High School in Marrero, Louisiana and students from Immaculata LaSalle High School in Miami and other listeners with us online from around the world and across the U.S. From the students at Immaculata in Miami: “What do you miss the most from your life before you were a sister?”
SISTER MARY: I think for me, what I miss the most is time with my family. We would have family game night and each one of the kids, when we were in middle school and high school, would invite one of their friends and my parents would invite a friend. We would all get together and have family game night. Obviously, there were too many of us to play one game of Scategories or anything, so we would split up at different levels of the house and play those games. There was just lying on the couch and listening to Sunday football the whole day, after church of course, but just watching Sunday football with the family. I think probably for me, I miss the time of just being with my family all the time. That would have been the same if I got married and moved away. I get to be close to them in different ways, but I guess from before to now that would be biggest thing I miss.
SISTER GUERLINE: Yes, similar for me also. I have a lot of nieces and nephews and I love them to pieces so sometimes when they have anything, I’m like, “Oh, I wish I could be there.” I can’t be there physically, but I am there spiritually, and they know--I often say, “I am praying for you. Good luck!” I will call them. Especially nowadays, with technology, I can call them, and I can see them so I am grateful that I do have that opportunity to call them and to still see them and support them, although I would want to be there. Really, the first thing that came up, not that I miss it, but that I appreciate it, just like the simple facts sometimes, I enjoy fashion. (laughter)
SISTER MARY: (laughter) I was going to answer that for her (laughter)
SISTER GUERLINE: I enjoy fashion.
SISTER MARY: (laughter) Nice shoes, nice hair. (laughter)
SISTER GUERLINE: I did a lot of pageants when I was in high school and college, so I enjoy dressing.
SISTER MARY: Beauty pageants!
SISTER GUERLINE: Not that I miss it, but I appreciate it. If it is something nowadays, if I see someone with something, I acknowledge, I say, “Hey, I like that outfit” or “I like that dress” or “I like those shoes.” I have a lot of sisters, so we had a lot of shoes in the house. (laughter)
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This transcript has been lightly edited for readability.