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Class of 2012 - Quotes


Sisters - Class of 2012

Lynn Caton, CSJ
Sister of St. Joseph, Brentwood, NY

I myself was very surprised by my calling to religious life. I was very happy where my life was; I had been married (divorced and received an annullment) had a grown child and had a very rewarding career. I have come to understand we truly do have a God of surprises; when the time was right for me to enter (though by far a non-traditional journey) God called.

Sister Emily Medina
Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angelas

I came to know our Lord through my parents' gift to our family of exposing us to beauty in nature. Through our frequent road trips, and hiking, camping, and backpacking, I came to encounter God's loving hand in creation and I learned to love silence as a place to encounter Him within. I think this gift opened me to long for more than even the good things of the world, so although I was interested in normal teenage things, deep down the call to give everything to the Lord whom I'd experienced to be so beautiful, was much more powerful! I was inspired by our Holy Father John Paul II's call to "be the saints of the new millenium" and the totality of the love of Saints like Saint Clare and Saint Therese who loved Jesus radically and whose lives were powerful, even though hidden, because of their love.

Marie Angele - Sisters of Mercy of the Americas West Midwest Community
I responded to my call to religious life at the prompting of a teenager. I ministered for a number of years professionally as a youth minister and educator while living my vocation as a single adult in the Church.

Jane O'Shaughnessy
Society of the Sacred Heart U.S. Province

I am oh so grateful for this life of "widening and deepening." I had a career as a systems and programmer analyst and now am in ministry as a retreat and spiritual director. My daughters and grandchildren are also amazed with my expanded global experiences.

Sister Maria Christi Cavanaugh
Olivetan Benedictine Sisters - Holy Angels Convent

I was a registered nurse by background with a career in Home Care Administration. I felt God's call to become a nun in my late 20s but was fearful to pursue it. Then in my early 40s I responded to an invitation by my parish priest to consider religious life.

Sister Sharon Rose Goellner
Domonican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation

I found my vocation though there were not many religious in my area. God has a way of making His call known and providing the means for us to follow it.

Sister Mariana Thayer
Domincan Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation

I have a brother who is also in religious life. I attended the canonization of my patroness, Saint Marianna Cope, in Rome on October 21, 2012

Sister Maria Catherine Rethwisch
Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation

I had considered religious life as a child, but in high school I ceased to talk about it while continuing to feel God's call in my heart. It was during a deepening life of prayer in one year of college that I knew God was calling me to follow Him in this radical way. Further helps to clarify my vocation were friendship with others who loved Christ especially through involvement with FOCUS, and a deepening understanding of the beauty of marriage through the Theology of the Body which showed me the beauty of total self-gift to Christ.

Sister Cherotich Chuma, CSJP
Congregation Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace

I became a religious sister instead of living the American dream that many expected from me back in Kenya. Until today, some of my friends still believe that I wasted the opportunity that many yearn for, but am grateful for the support of my family and friends here in Seattle. To top that, I became the first African in my Congregation which comes with its own challenges.

Sister Marie Estelle of the Holy Spirit, OCD Klein
Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles

I would write letters to Jesus in my mind when my family would attend Adoration/Benediction at my parish when I was a little girl. I am indebted to my family, friends, priests, and sisters in Carmel for helping me "come to know and believe in the love God has for me" so that I could say YES to the call of Jesus to be forever His bride in Carmel. Let us pray for each other in this Year of Faith, and pray especially for our priests.

Maryanne, OP Hoang
Domincan Sisters of Mary Immaculate Province

I became a Religious Sister and just took a perpetual profession of vows. All of my friends said that I would leave the order after a year in the religious life and did not think religious life right for me. To their surprise, I took perpetual profession vows and still consecrated to God and belonged to the Church.

Sister Johanna Mignogno, SSND
School Sisters of Notre Dame Atlantic-Midwest Province

I fought with myself about becoming a religious sister. I come from a large family and wanted to get married and have children.

Sister Kathleen Persson
Benedictine Sisters of Virginia - St. Benedict Monastery

I was married and raised a family before entering the monastery.

Sister Maria Rosario Villarreal
Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist

I lived overseas most of my formative years in the Middle East (3rd through 9th grade). I made my First Holy Communion in Isfahan, Iran and then received the Sacrament of Confirmation in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Being part of the Underground Church in Saudi Arabia definitely began an awakening in my heart to truly live and be for the Lord. It made me not take my faith for granted.

Michelle Lesher
Sisters of St. Joseph of Philadelphia

I was a music major even though most of my ministry has been centered around teachign theology and working in Campus Ministry. Music, whether simply listening to it, singing, or playing the flute, has been one of the ways that I have been drawn more deeply into relationship with God throughout my life. Sharing that gift often gave me an "up-close" look at religious life and perhaps the courage to say yes to the call.

Sister Juanita Gutierrez, OCD
Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles
I wanted to be a wife and mother of many children growing up, as I never liked being an only child. One night while reading a book, I saw a photo of a woman in a wedding dress who was describing her "Profession Day." When I realized that being a Sister meant being Jesus' bride, I fell in love. And now I have more spiritual children and more Sisters (143 all together) than I could ever have had, had I married. How good God is!

Sister Gaily Trinite' Coteau
Visitation of Holy Mary - Visitation Monastery of Brooklyn
I have 2 adult children and 2 grandchildren. I was planning on to enter the Monastery but I would have procrastinated more if I did not get hit crossing the street. And immediately I heard: "What if I had desired your life this day?"

Sister Mary John Kramer, OP
Dominican Sister of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist
I did not plan to be a teacher before I entered my teaching community. He called me to a contemplative apostolic community and has given me the grace to respond. Jesus always provides the graces we need for each moment, but not a moment before!

Sister Faustina Deppe, OCD
Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles
I did not grow up Catholic and I didn't even think about Religious Life until after college. However, when God make known His loving will and His call to follow Him as His spouse, I could do nothing but follow with my whole life. I am infinitely grateful for a vocation to Consecrated Life; He is faithful forever!

Sister Julia Marie Flathers, OP
Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia Congregations
I originally thought I was called to be a Sister of Notre Dame and then a Benedictine sister, but it was my dear friends in those orders that helped me discern my Dominican vocation. I am forever grateful for their openness to God's will in guiding me to the Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia.

Sister Susan Catherine Wade
School Sisters of St. Francis of Christ the King - Province of Lemont
I read an article online entitled "A Day in the Life of a Sister." After reading this article, I felt even more deeply in my heart that God was calling me and that I could live the life of a religious in community. The author of the article became my formation director during my time as a postulant, for novitiate, and during some of my years as a junior sister.

Sister Christiana Mickwee
Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregations
I loved dancing, playing sports, and hanging out with friends and family but was not a practicing Catholic or someone who had really experienced faith at home. My parents helped to foster the desire I had for what was good and true and beautiful but I had very little grasp that these qualities were only fully found in the One who is Truth, Goodness, and Beauty Himself. When I found Him, I longed to give myself to Him with the same fullness that He gave Himself to us.

Sister Marie Noelle Lawrence
Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation
I thought I would enter religious life, make my vows, and find that the longing I had for God would be fulfilled. To my surprise, the more I experience God's love and faithfulness through my community, I find that the desire for Him only continues to deepen. I am blessed to know my life will be spent loving the Lord in a joyful, supportive, and (by God's grace) faithful community who helps me daily love the Church, the Eucharist, and our Lady more and more.

Sister Karol Marie Zachman
Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation
I attended public school, had never been exposed to religious sisters, and thus never considered the possibility of a religious vocation in my youth. It wasn't until after a World Youth Day experience that the idea of a religious vocation became a reality to me.

Sister M. Judine Lambert, SND
Sister of Notre Dame
I had no interest in vowed religious life before age 48. I was both shocked and thrilled when I realized God was calling me to this life. The challenge of this vocation has been incredibly and I am grateful beyond words.

Mary Frohlich
Society of the Sacred Heart
I love to spend time outdoors, hiking, and learning from the intricate details of nature. I am passionate about the need for humans to change our ways to become members of the community of nature, rather than its dominators.

Sister Mary Joseph, OP
Our Lady of Mt. Thabor Monastery (Dominican Nuns)
I was attending law school at Ave Maria when I first received the call to religious life. The discernment process was not easy but with the help of God and so many of His great servants, "anything is possible with God."

Laura Bishop
Sisters of St. Joseph
I love hanging out with my friends and family, have a good sense of humor, and enjoy sharing laughs. I worked full time and was almost finished with my Master's Degree before entering. I love religious life because of the deep encounters with Jesus and through the people with whom we minister.

Sister Maria de la Revelacion Castaneda
Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara
I graduated from Mary Washington University with a degree in International Relations and Economics. I wanted to help people and travel the world. As I discerned my vocation, I realized that when you give God everything (even your good desires), He has a surprising way of transforming and elevating them so that all your desires are longed for in and through Him.

Sister Mary Judith Caswell
Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist
I played hockey and worked road construction, grew up on an Indian Reservation, and have two brothers in religious life.

Julie Peak
Sacred Heart Monastery, Benedictine Sisters
I first thought that I might have a call to the religious life decades before I found the community that God was calling me to enter.

Norma Pocasangre
Maryknoll Sisters of Saint Dominic Inc.
For 10 years I kept in contact with the Maryknoll Sisters in El Salvador without making the decision to enter. I believe God's call and will for us is always there and it doesn't matter what. Nothing can take us away from it.

Sister Rosanna Hodlik
Sisters of St. Joseph of the Third Order of St. Francis
I began thinking of religious life in elementary school but didn't do anything until my 40s. It was in getting laid off from a job I thought I enjoyed that prompted me to begin the process of looking at religious life. Rather than being discouraged from entering, the process took on a life of its own with no interference on my part leaving me to believe I am where I was meant to be.

Sister Mary George Brown, FSGM
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George
I entered religious life right out of high school. I had my whole first year of college paid for with scholarships, but the summer I graduated I gave it all up and found my community and God's call to religious life. Instead of a softball playing costume designer, I've become a habit wearing music teacher.

Sister Louise Marie Jones
Sisters of the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament
I am a mother and grandmother. I decided to fulfill my desire to become a religious after my husband's death. My son and daughter and their family stood by me proudly as I made my Perpetual Profession, August 19, 2012.

Amy Williams
Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities
I never considered the possibility of religious life until I had to deal with the loss of a loved one to cancer. This experience opened me to a desire for a deeper spiritual life.

Sister Karuna Kispotta
Poor Clare Missionary Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament
I was raised in northeast India, in the state of Orissa, and I was about ten years old when I was inspired to become a sister. Answering "yes" to Jesus was the most unforgettable experience of peace and joy.

Edna Pearl Esquibel
Congregation of the Sisters of St. Felix of Cantalice - Our Lady of Hope
I seriously began discerning a vocation to the religious when I had climbed the ladder of success we are all taught to strive for and did not find the happiness promised. I wanted to do more with my life. It was during Eucharistic Adoration during Lent and a devotion to the Divine Mercy that Jesus showed me that happiness came through his call to follow him as a religious.

Sister Sophia Lopez, OP
Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation
Although I was educated by the Dominican Friars in college and loved to be around them, it never occurred to me that I could have a Dominican vocation myself. Instead I visited a variety of other religious orders before I realized that God brought me to this college for a reason—to begin to fall in love with the Dominican charism and to recognize it in myself.

Sister Theresa Paul Khanh-Vy T Tran
Dominican Sisters - Mary Immaculate Province
I love being a Dominican Sister!

Maria Christina Hennig
Sisters of Notre Dame USA - Covington Province
I followed my vocation when I was 49 years old. I experience the richness of life and live in the freedom of being a disciple of Jesus.

Sister Mary Our Lady of Ostrabrama Ludka
Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara
I belong to a missionary order Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara. I have now been a Sister for seven years, thanks be to God. I've had the grace to be on mission in Ireland for four years and I am now on mission in Iceland.

Sister Mary Hanah Doak, RSM
Religious Sisters of Mercy
I have had my biggest conversion to Christ after entering the convent.

Sister M. Teresa Pandl
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth
I first visited a convent because it was on my "bucket" list, but during that first visit I knew I would be back there to stay someday. I had two great desires in my heart: 1) to serve God by serving His people 2) to give my life/myself completely to Jesus. Jesus revealed to me that the answer to fulfilling those two desires is my vocation as a religious sister.

Sister Mary Jackson, FMA
Daughters of Mary Help of Christians (Salesian Sisters) - St. Phillips Province
I laugh loud and often! Also I'm forever grateful that God is persistent and patient in His love because during college another man had my heart. On another note, I play sports so frequently that my parish priest calls me Sister Sneakers. We, Sisters, are always with the young.

Sister M. Bridget Martin
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth

I asked to enter our community while I was visiting for the first time. I felt totally peaceful and knew God was calling me to be His Bride.

Sister M. Christiana Lanuzga, FSGM
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth
I was a "military brat" (father was in the Air Force) whose family lived overseas half of my youth. I never met a sister until briefly in high school, and I did not go to a Catholic School until college. I wanted to be a missionary in high school before changing paths in college. God had His plan for my life!

Sister Marie Caritas
School Sisters of Christ the King
I enjoyed working as a news anchor for my college's television station before entering religious life!

Jessica Taylor
Sister of Providence - Mother Joseph Province
I took ten years to discern my vocation before I entered the Sister of Providence and most of that time I was trying to convince my parents it was a good idea.

Sister Gianna Marie Webber
Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual Adoration
I was baptized a Catholic as an infant but did now grow up in the Church, however the witness of my mother after her return to the Church impacted me tremendously. Throughout my conversion and early return years, the witness of holy men and women and the beauty of the teachings in the Catechism of the Catholic Church continued to convert, instruct, and inspire my heart. The religious life that followed was a surprise and an incredible invitation to a beautiful life with a wonderful religious family of holy women.

Valerie Roxburgh
Sisters of Notre Dame - California Province

I was returning Catholic when I got my call to religious life. 9/11 was my spiritual wake-up call.

Anna Maria Baldauf
Society of Helpers - Province of United States

I grew up in a little mountain village in Austria. I began to love dogs in religious life even though I grew up on a farm.

Sister Mary Judy Marsella
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth

I come from a non-practicing Catholic family. We stopped going to Mass as a family in 7th grade. However, the seed was planted, God watered, and I grew with, in, and through Him, always finding my roots in Him, in the Catholic Church.

Sister M. Ignatia Cooney
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth

I didn't consider a religious vocation for myself until I was 16 and then entered a community only 2 years later. God works in very personal and mysterious ways in every sense.

Sister Mary Gianna Nazor
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth

I converted when I was 14. After I entered the convent, my mother also became a sister. She entered Poor Clares in Minnesota and made her final vows three years ago.

Susan Norton
Parish Visitors of Mary Immaculate - Marycrest

I did not know anything about religious life or what a religious sister was because I had never met one.

Sister Shawn Pauline of Carmel, OCD Burke
Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles

Religious Life is full of a deep joy that surpasses no other in this world if indeed it is the call that God has for you. There is a fullness and depth of the tremendous graces that flow to the "Spouse of Christ" from the Sacred Heart. His grace sustains me and I have been delightfully surprised at how deeply satisfied I am to be in religious life. I was born for this and so many of the voices in society tried to show me a different path to happiness. I am extremely grateful that I listened to Him and follow Him every day of my life. "I feel a divine jealousy for you, for I have betrothed you to Christ to present you as a pure bride to her one husband." 2 Cor 11

Madelyn Louttit
Annunciation Monastery

I wanted to be a Catholic since I was very little but never thought about religious life or considered it until middle age. I loved everything about church and would have moved into it if I could have, since I spent so much time there anyway. I was married for 15 years and had become a widow prior to the extensive church involvement I engaged in subsequently.

Roxanne Seifert
Sisters of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

I thought I was going to a career development workshop when I registered for a "Come and See" weekend in our diocese. I was drawn to this religious institute because the only Sister who seemed happy and genuinely interested in attendees (of which there were only two) at a diocesan Miriam Dinner was the Presentation Sister.

Flor Buruca
Sister of St. Dominic Amityville

Prayer, community life, and the sense of walking and standing up for those who are marginalizes was what attracted me to the Sisters of St. Dominic Amityville.

Sister Elizabeth Ann Dockery
Disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ

I was a professional bass player before I entered religious life.

Nkechi Lilian Iwuoha
Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ - American Province

I never contemplated entering religious life since I did not participate in Church activities as a child.

Sister Cynthia Salas
Daughters of Mary Help of Christions - Western Province of Mary Immaculate

I wanted to graduate from college, get a job, get married and have children, and live close to my parents. Today I have graduated from college, I found my mission, got married (to Jesus), have many spiritual daughters and sons, and hope that one day I will live close to my parents.

Sister Agnes Mary Quartararo
Dominican Sisters of Hawthorne - Congregation of St. Rose of Lima

I love to draw cartoons.

Sister M. Clementia Toalson
Sister of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth

I did not grow up in an incredibly Catholic family, but through attending Protestant youth group, realized the riches of the Catholic faith, which led to a deep conversion and zealous desire for the Sacraments. The devotion of Divine Mercy aided me in this endeavor and helped me in times of distress, as well as discernment. I take my name for this devotion - "Clementia" meaning "mercy" in Latin.

Sister Mary Monica Bonete
Daughters of our Mother of Peace - Queen of Heaven Solitude

I learned how to solder things and now I am learning how to solder persons to Christ through individual direction and by knocking on doors, presenting and sharing our faith. People are surprised to see Catholics especially "blue nuns." It's challenging and a great gift to be able to knock on the doors of men's hearts helping them to let Christ in.

Sister M. Catherine Welter
Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth

I entered the convent only two months after I met our sisters for the first time.

Sister M. Andrea Goeckner
Sister of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George - Province of St. Elizabeth

I enjoy caring for sick and elderly people. My means of relaxation is to go for "rosary walks" and meeting new people. Most of all, I love being a witness of the beauty that comes from total dedication to the Word.

Sister Mary, Ark of the Covenant Koenig
Servants of the Lord and Virgin of Matara - Immaculate Conception

I played lacrosse in college and was a civil engineer when God called me to religious life at the last World Youth Day of Blessed John Paul the Great in Canada. I consider being a spouse of Christ my greatest joy.

Melissa Schreifels
School Sisters of Notre Dame - Central Pacific Province

I was taught by the School Sisters of Notre Dame and my first grade teacher was my postulant director.

Agnes Le
Discalces Carmelite Nuns - Monastery of St. Joseph and St. Teresa

I am very happy in my vocation and that I volunteered to come as a missionary to America from Vietnam. Also, I am studying English and it is difficult. I try hard every day.

Sister Lynn Elisabeth Meadows, OSB
Benedictine Sisters of Cullman, Alabama - Sacred Heart Monastery

I wanted to be a missionary when I grew up. I was raised in a Protestant home and as a child was very drawn to the stories of those serving  Christ in other lands and the witness of missionaries who visited our church. Now a Catholic, the call to Religious Life seems like a fulfillment of that early desire to give myself fully to God.

Sister Mary Rosanna Leinberger, RSM
Religious Sisters of Mercy

I had a degree in Horticulture before I entered and also enjoyed doing pottery in my free time.

Sister Mariella Huong Vu
Lovers of the Holy Cross of Go Vap

I don't know how my future will be. I love religious life here in this wonderful place where I love and am loved. I wish all my life is a praise and thanksgiving to God. I know that He is the only God I should obey and worship.



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Brothers - Class of 2012

Brother Peter Sullivan
St. John's Abbey, MN

I am an artist. I am also going to school for art. I may teach art at our University.

Brother Jason Ford
Congregation of Christian Brother - Edmund Rice Christian Brothers North America

I entered college saying to myself: "There is no way you are going to become a Christian Brother." However, God had other plans for me! Over the past 9 years I can safely say that God put me on a path that has made me truly happy and truly complete as a Brother, as a person, and as a member of the Church.

Brother Clinton Reed
Brotherhood of Hope
If I had known of the Lord's call for me to become a religious Brother when I was baptized in high school, I would have run like lightning in the other direction. I never would have thought that such a life could satisfy my heart. However, after encountering His personal love for me, I became open to the Lord's will for my life. Through the experience of Brotherhood, I began to be attracted to the radical witness of the vocation of a Brother (and Brotherhood!) who is consumed with the Lord's all-sufficient love and the evangelistic power of life that proclaims that the Lord alone is enough.

Father John Meoska, OSB
Order of St. Benedict - St. John's Abbey

I considered priesthood and religious life from a young age. My parents, family, friends, and teacher all encourage me to seek Christ and serve the Church in this way. Religious life was, for us, the "old normal."

Brother Blase Faimega
The Society of Our Mother of Peace - Mary, The Font of Solitude

I am very happy about my call and always grateful to God for giving me the privilege  to serve as a religious.

Brother Gregory Cellini
Franciscan Brothers of Brooklyn - Our Lady of Angels Friary

I experienced failure in the corporate world, which led me to Religious Life. The greatest decision I allowed God to make for me was to become a Franciscan Brother of Brooklyn. If you are feeling discontent, unrest or a stirring inside, come explore us!

Brother Pio Adamonis
Benedictine - St. Vincent Archabbey

I am a music producer. I grew up DJing and made it a career in music technology. I also have a background in finance. I am a late bloomer, entered the Benedictines at age 40. I had a major conversion back to the Faith after being away from the Church since 13 years of age.

Brother Juan Acuña
Missionaries of the Precious Blood - Cincinnati Province

I worked for the Ministry of Urban Planning and Housing of the Chilean Government as a Financial Analyst before entering Religious Life.

Brother David Pohorsky
Oblates of St. Joseph - Holy Spouses Province

Being a brother and having worked in maintenance during the summer enable me to help people in more ways than I ever imagined, repairing everything from broken relationships to broken gates.

Brother Mario Gomez
Order of Friar Minor - Holy Name Province/St. Anthony Shrine Boston, MA

Even though I was baptized when I was 18 years old, my grandma always talked to me about St. Francis of Assisi (her mother was a Secular Franciscan). I grew up very fond of St. Francis from a very early age. I love being a friar and love being able to minister to the Latina Community and spread the Word in the footsteps of Francis "en Español."

Brother John Paul (Ryan) Heiser
St. Vincent Archabbey - American Cassinese Congregation

I benefited greatly in my discernment from a trip to Italy sponsored by St. Vincent Archabbey for young men seeking a religious vocation, from the witness of my uncle who is a diocesan priest, from teh experience of adoring the Blessed Sacrament, especially on the Search retreat program, and from consecration to the Immaculate Virgin.

Brother Thomas Farnsworth, S.M.
Society of Mary (Marianists) - Province of USA

I became a Marianist Brother because of a former Marianist teaching brother who was my professor in graduate school. What is fascinating to me is that he strongly encouraged and affirmed me to pursue a religious vocation despite his currently being an Atheist and Buddhist! God truly does work in mysterious ways, even through a Buddhist Atheist! Praised be Jesus and Mary!

Brother Stephen Bay Van Nguyen
Order of the Cistercians of the Strict Observance - Our Lady of New Clairvaux

I never thought of entering the monastery because my bishop wanted me to become a diocesan priest. However, at 22 years old, my uncle, the abbot of Chau San Cistercian Monastery in Vietnam, visited my family and helped me understand and desire the monastic way of life. Now I thank God for calling and allowing me to make solemn monastic vows on September 30, 2012.

Brother Tom Nguyen
Capuchin Franciscans - St. Joseph Province

I am a musician that is studying fr a M.div degree in theology as well as a masters in church music. I was inspired to religious life because of the simplicity of Capuchins and how they were able to see the beauty of God's grace and love in the simple things in life. I along with another brother made solemn profession in August and we are the first Vietnamese/Vietnamese American friars that have made solemn profession in the history of the Province of St. Joseph of the Capuchin Franciscans Order.

Brother Hugh Vanasse
Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance (Trappists) - Monastery of the Holy Spirit, Conyers, GA

I was outside the Church for 30 years. As I approached my fiftieth birthday, I became extremely aware of experiencing a "call" about every 10 years since childhood. It was simply time to say "YES!"

Brother Christopher Cheney
Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance (Trappists) - Our Lady of New Clairvaux Abbey

I was captivated by monastic life at my very first exposure. I am so grateful to Our Lord and Lady for the gift of serving them in this vocation.

Brother Francis Pham
Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance (Trappists) - Our Lady of New Clairvaux Abbey
After 14 years of discernment and living in Religious Life, I now made my commitment to God by solemn profession.

Father Jean-Luc Zadroga
St. Vincent Archabbey

Was a diocesan priest before entering the Archabbey. I was very happy in my vocation as a diocesan priest, but felt an attraction to communal life and prayer.

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