On Wednesday, February 3, 2010, I pulled up to St. Scholastica Monastery to begin life as a member of this Community. I took with me only what I knew I would be allowed to bring, needed to have, and, practically speaking, what would fit into my car. I had spent the previous month divesting myself of my belongings while saying goodbye to my friends and loved ones.
“Let them prefer nothing whatever to Christ…” (RB 72.11)
The adjustment to religious life is one that necessarily takes time. There were times when I looked back and missed my friends, my family, my ministries, and my life back in New Orleans. There were times when I looked forward in wonder at what the future would bring, and I would ask God, “What are you up to with me?” In between were all the present moments, graced moments where I experienced the indescribable consolation of knowing that I am exactly where God wants me to be and that God has been, and will continue, to carry me every step of the way.
“…and may he bring us all together to everlasting life.” (RB 72.12)
How remarkably blessed I am that God, Who knows me better than I know myself, brought me to a place where people, community, and prayer are the most important things; to a place where I can continue to seek God and be changed into a better person by the seeking; to a place where others, who have been making the same journey I have only just begun, support me, pray for me, and encourage me.
“As we progress in this way of life and in faith, we shall run on the path of God’s commandments, our hearts overflowing with the inexpressible delight of love.” (RB Prol. 49)
I look forward to many more anniversaries when I can look back — “one year later” — and feel blessed by God’s continual presence.
Sister Ann Marie Wainright
Sister Ann Marie Wainright is a Benedictine Sister of St. Scholastica Monastery in Duluth, Minnesota. Originally from New Orleans, Louisiana, she worked as a CPA for many years before earning dual masters degrees in counseling and pastoral studies. Sister Ann Marie is interested how people encounter God in their daily lives and how they use their faith and spirituality in meeting difficult challenges.