Stories of Joy - No. 8 - Vocation Story — “From age 6 ... ”

In Canada

From age 6, when the two Sisters, who came to their parish to teach catechism during the summer, stayed with the family, she liked them. They were fun, when they played with them. They knew many stories, and gave the smaller children nice medals. Everyone had to be very quiet when the Sisters went to their room to pray — and to sleep. Skip over a few years, and at Sacred Heart Academy, she eventually knew she would be a Sister and a teacher. A teacher first, she would buy many little surprises for the Sisters. Then she would join them. After graduating from high school, she stayed on at the farm to give her older sister a chance to spend a year with her city uncle, regaining strength after thyroid surgery. It was the mid-point of WWII, so she organized a Red Cross branch in the area, to raise money for the war effort. And what was the popular fund raiser? — knitting socks for our soldiers! Her older brother noticed her disappointment at the income generated, and got a brilliant idea — a Saturday night Dance for the Red Cross! The farm community just loved the occasional Saturday night event! Her brother introduced her, and by far she stole the dance floor that night. Next morning the two siblings presented a full purse to the local Red Cross representative.

She had done her patriotic duty, and now would register at Teachers’ College. Her faithful horseback rider brother rode the seven miles to pick up the mail at the town post office, and there he would mail her application. Thank God, she had just made the deadline date! What? The date passed, and another two weeks, and no reply of acceptance. . . When she shared her perplexity with her brother, he scratched his head and calmly said: “Oh, that letter; it’s still in my jacket pocket.” Within a very short while, she was on her way to the SSMI novitiate in Mundare, Alberta. Many years later, while spending time with her retired and widowed mother, she learned that on Red Cross Dance night, her mother prayed all evening that she would not lose her vocation. Her mother also told her, that early every Wednesday morning, while the family was still asleep, she knelt by the small praying table covered with a white cloth, and on which were small statues of Jesus and Mary, and prayed a Rosary for her children. When the next Wednesday came, both Mother and a grateful SSMI daughter knelt by the small table.

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