Begin Your Journey
Choose a Different Path
God has a dream for each person. Many people find their vocation in marriage, some choose to live as single people and others find their vocation in religious life. To discover God’s dream for us, there is a need to take time to reflect on the calling that best fits our desires, gifts, talents and personalities.
Living as religious sisters means living a vowed life. When we are professed as Religious Sisters of Charity, we make four vows: the three vows that most religious take and a fourth that is specific to our congregation. The vows are: Chastity, Poverty, Obedience and service of the Poor.
Chastity is God's gift to us which allows us to devote ourselves to God and to God's people. This means that we do not engage in any exclusive relationships. By our vow of chastity we are set free to be women for others, free to go where we are called and to minister where we are needed.
Our vow of poverty means that we live simply, and in a manner that is not beyond what can be afforded by people of modest means who have to work hard to support themselves and their families.
By our vow of obedience we are available to go wherever we are asked and to do whatever best serves God's people.
Service of the Poor
Our 4th and particular vow of service of the poor enables us to continue in the footsteps of Mary Aikenhead who sent her sisters to work with people who were poor, sick, vulnerable and marginalised.
Like many children growing up in Dublin during the 1960’s and 70’s, I was one of the lucky ones to be born into a family of faith and religious practice. I am one of five; my twin brother and I being the eldest. We were not a ‘rosary’ family, but my mother, to this day, lights a candle on her ‘sacred space’ which is the mantle piece! Each day when I was growing up, as the candle was lit, we called to mind a special intention. We were fortunate that we lived beside the church and we seldom passed it without paying a visit to Jesus in the tabernacle and having a chat with him.
I attended a Religious Sisters of Charity school, both Primary and Secondary, so I got to know many of the Sisters. I was always impressed by them and their generosity in helping us, always going the extra mile!! Having finished school, and like many girls of my age, I enjoyed being in the company of my peers. We went to the cinema, discos and even the pub where the real chats happened. Some of us were in the Legion of Mary. I was also involved with the organisation, which still exists, Young Christian Workers (YCW) – see, judge and act was the core value of this group. While we saw, judged and acted on many issues we also had a very healthy social life, and we travelled abroad to meet other YCW groups. Putting faith into action was important to me then.
I began to feel that there was more to life – that I needed more than work, my friends and social activities.
When I turned 20 years, I began to feel that there was more to life – that I needed more than work, my friends and social activities. While I enjoyed all these, there was the yearning for the more. Religious life came to mind and once it came, there was no getting rid of it! My friend, Veronica, who could read my mind, encouraged me to follow it up. Eventually, with her by my side, she picked up the phone and rang the Noviciate house in Milltown, asked to speak to the Novice Mistress and then handed me the phone! The following year in October, 1977 I joined the Religious Sisters of Charity.
35 years on, I still feel great gratitude to Veronica for her encouragement in helping me to take up my mat and follow Jesus by answering his call ‘Come and See’. I came and saw and I soon felt very much at home with having time and space for daily prayer, which is now a vital part of my life. I have never looked back. Like any human life I have had my ups and downs, but maybe as a Religious Sister of Charity I have learned to find God in all the bits and pieces of life. This has helped me grow into a deeper personal relationship with Him who is the food for my journey of life.
Becoming a sister
If you feel that you would like to live the life of a Religious Sister of Charity, here is how you can start the process:
- Contact the RSC closest to you
- Meet with a Sister of Charity
- Spend some time discerning whether you are called to serve God in this way