My family was not religious, and we did not go to church. Yet, when I was around seven years old…
I was lying in bed, and I knew God existed. He was there with me, and I knew Him. For years following this experience, I would pray to the Lord in thanksgiving. All I knew was that He existed and that my response was a thank you which encompassed everything.
When I was 10 years old, I was in a serious sledding accident. I fractured my skull and was unconscious in the hospital for about two weeks. Only after I had become a novice and received the name Sr. Talitha, after the little girl whose father pleaded with Jesus for her life, did my own father tell me that while I was in the hospital he had offered me to God if I would live. Shortly after the accident, my family began attending Mass for the first time. I wish everyone could have the experience I did walking into the Church: here was what I had been searching for without knowing how to find it. I was home.
During my college years, I became involved in prayerful witness outside of abortion clinics. I still remember the faces of the women there, especially as they came out of the clinic. Blank. Hopeless. Something of infinite value had been stripped away from them. I longed to ease their pain, and in that longing knew nothing I could give would ever come close to being enough. I began to beg the Lord to take me into His prayer for them; only He could touch this wound and bring true healing. Eventually the Lord would lead me to encounter the Sisters of Life, and again, I knew that I was home.
After I professed my first vows, I longed to love without limits, but I had to be freed of patterns of fear and selfishness in order to have this love purified. How grateful I am to the Lord, for truly forming me as a Father would, for looking not at my weaknesses and failures, but at the deep desires of my heart for goodness. The Cross is painful; yet, it offers a love I long to give. How humbled, honored, and in awe I am that Lord chooses and trusts me to make such an offering of love.