In this Random Nun Clip, we talk about what it means to be a prophetic witness and how that can help people. Hear the full Ask Sister episode AS214 at aNunsLife.org.
Sister Mindy Welding, IHM, grew up in Pittsburgh, Penn., and is a member of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM) of Scranton, Penn. Sister Mindy is the Vocation Director for her congregation and assists the Diocese of Scranton vocation efforts. She is also a spiritual director. She previously served as a religion teacher, Director of Religious Formation, Pastoral Associate and a Campus Minister. Sister Mindy loves music, and in addition to playing the guitar she is learning the mandolin. She also enjoys kayaking, creating art, and visiting with family and friends.
SISTER MAXINE: You are listening to Sister Maxine of A Nun’s Life Ministry and my guest, Sister Mindy Welding of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Your congregation’s mission is to follow Jesus as a community of disciples, aware that we are sent to be a clear and understandable prophetic witness to the presence of God in the world. So as a vocation director, how are you that prophetic witness, and what does it mean to be a prophetic witness?
SISTER MINDY: I think of the prophets in the Old Testament. I don’t think I want to end up like them. (laughter)
SISTER MAXINE: (laughter) They kind of had a tough life.
SISTER MINDY: They had a very tough life! But I think in this day and age, it’s often tough to maintain your faith, and to talk about your faith in God. As a vocation director, maybe I’m the safest person for young adults to seek out, to talk about God. To be prophetic can mean lots of different things, but maybe in this role, it means to be a prophet of God, to announce that God is near and in your life and God loves you. That is such a phrase that many people do not hear and need to hear. God loves you immensely. And you are enough. With God, you are enough. You don’t have to change. You are always enough.
SISTER MAXINE: That’s a powerful message to give to people.
SISTER MINDY: It is very profound. I actually have that as a screen saver on my own computer. I have to remember it myself because in this day and age, we are so caught up with sides. Who’s conservative, who’s a liberal, who’s a Democrat, who’s a Depublican, who is an immigrant, who belongs in the United States. There’s so many fractions that to be prophetic is to bring us all together as one, as God’s family. That often is very difficult and calls us to stand out as a voice along with the people—not for the voiceless. I don’t believe anybody is voiceless. But those who need help in being heard. So maybe as a vocation director, not only to stand as witness in a larger group as our congregation, but to stand with the young people or the not so young people, who are trying to find their voice with God and with their life. What do I do with my life? How do I serve our God? How do I serve the church? How do I serve my community?
To hear full episodes of A Nun’s Life podcasts, visit the podcast page at anunslife.org/podcasts.
This transcript has been lightly edited for readability.