There are certain stories that can only be written by two: God’s hand and ours.
My vocational story starts with an invitation: an invitation that would change my life. Someone asked me if I wanted to join the youth group and play guitar in the church choir. At the time my priorities were not God, on the contrary, I ran from Him. Friends, the beach, indoor soccer, the Carnival filled my very busy days. At the time I walked on the shore with a Stranger. It’s as if He walked next to me but I pulled away… I was scared!
“It’s as if He walked next to me
but I pulled away…
I was scared!”
Going to the youth group was really good. However, inside and out everything was the same, nothing had changed in me. If I had had to tell someone who I was I wouldn’t have been able to. I acted according to my surroundings and adopted different behaviour, to the extent that I lived a permanent double life. An empty life, devoid of meaning. It was at such times of confusion, that the Stranger would come close and try to speak to me or show me a different way on the shore. Nonetheless, it was I who controlled my life and giving in to something unknown to me, was unthinkable.
would come close
and try to speak…”
The youth group and the prayer evenings became more and more vital. The emptiness I felt when I went out at night, love of parties and the attraction to the so called “freedom” nearly drove me over the edge… but at the same time and mysteriously so, I felt fulfilled, but I didn´t know how or why! Until finally I found out Who the Stranger was, who walked with me on the shore: His name was Jesus! Nevertheless, little had changed in me. I was still on the driver’s seat.
“…finally I found out
Who the Stranger was…”
In the meantime the youth group decided to go on retreat to Gerês. At a certain point, someone saw me in great distress and asked a Sister to come and speak to me. We began talking about my wish to go to the navy, when she asked me: “have you ever thought of becoming a nun?” to which I tried to answer as politely as I could that that was out of the question. Their way of life had never appealed to me. “Me, Sister? Don’t even think about it!” And that question remained tightly locked in my mind for three years. During this period my motto was “no limits” and live life to the full. Even so, I used to go to Church every Sunday. My mirror had not yet shattered before God, nor had I felt His Mercy nor His love for me just as I was.
My mirror shattered after an invitation to a vocational camp by Father Filipe Santos. At first I said no to the invitation, because the idea I had was: “Oh no, spend some days with nuns, please, spare me!” But I ended up accepting. There I went, and the question locked away for three years in my mind, came back. During that time I was uneasy with the question, and decided to speak to a Sister, who having listened to my story realised was of the same Congregation as the one in Gerês.
In small signs come great certainties…
With the help of a Sister, I began discerning God’s signs in my life and what path to take. Slowly I understood that God was asking more of me. Asking that I follow Him specifically in the Aliança de Santa Maria. From then on I allowed Jesus to tell me which way He wanted us to take on the shore. However, doubts arose as well as temptations, and at a point when everything was leading me backward I decided to ask God what it was that He wanted of me. I took the Bible and the first thing I read was:
“They left everything and followed Him”
Leaving everything, allowing Him to lead my life, I wished to say “Yes” to Him, in total and faithful surrender to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, for all Humanity. After joining the Congregation I understood that Jesus is the only one who gives full meaning to my life.
It is worth risking everything for Him who fulfills all the demands of our heart.