1. Tell us about your community in 50 words or less.
Our Lady of Grace Monastery is a Benedictine community of women founded on prayer, work and hospitality. Our prayer life includes the Liturgy of the Hours, daily Eucharist and personal prayer. The sisters engage in various ministries seeking to offer Benedictine hospitality and the love of Christ to all.
2. What do you like to do for fun?
I enjoy reading, time spent in nature, bicycling, visiting family, and having coffee with friends.
3. What were you doing before becoming your community’s vocation director?
Prior to becoming the vocation director, I was the Director of Spirituality at the Benedict Inn Retreat & Conference Center. As such I was responsible for our 2-year training program in spiritual direction, offered spiritual direction and also offered various short programs on a variety of spiritual topics. I love journeying with people as they are living their life in Christ.
4. What are two books you have read recently?
I am currently reading Laudato Si and We Are already One: Thomas Merton’s Message of Hope: Reflections on His Centenary edited by Jonathan Montaldo.
5. Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio. I still have relatives in Ohio and enjoy returning home to visit them.
6. Tell us about your family.
I grew up the oldest of 3 in Cincinnati, Ohio. I have two younger sisters, Jackie and Jill. Jackie lives in Minnesota with her husband. Jill (who became paralyzed at the age of 3) lives in Loveland, Ohio with my mother Rosemary. My father Gary passed away two years ago on the Feast of St. Scholastica. For me, it was comforting that he died on a Benedictine feast day and while we, the community were at Mass. We all love Jesus, nature and animals and you can often find my family outdoors. Not having any brothers, my father taught us girls how to fish early on. So, I like fishing especially with my sister and brother–in-law. My younger sister Jill is a huge Reds fan and we have fun watching games together. I enjoy helping my mother in her garden, preparing for family celebrations and occasionally going out to lunch. I see my family as a gift given to me by God and to cherish the time that we have together. My monastic community is family too and I feel the same way about my sisters in community.
7. What is your favorite part of your present ministry in vocations?
I feel that it is a privilege to journey with women who are discerning a call to monastic life. As I journey with others, I am reminded of the joy of my own call to monastic life and enjoy sharing the details and the beauty of the life with others.
8. What do you like most about being Catholic?
My mother’s side of the family is Catholic and my father converted to Catholicism after marrying my mother. I feel that being Catholic is central to who I am as a person having attended Catholic grade school, high school and college. For me, the tremendous gift of the sacraments and being able to attend daily Mass and praying the Liturgy of the Hours with the whole Church is key to seeking God and my spirituality.
9. What are the top 3 things on your bucket list?
I am drawn to the image of pilgrimage and have read many accounts of people who have gone on pilgrimage. I would like to, as a pilgrim, travel to Santiago de Compostela, Rome and to the places that are holy places for Benedictines: Subiaco and Monte Cassino in Italy.
10. If you could choose any superpower to have, what would it be?
I would like to be a healer and bring an end to war in our world.
11. Where would we find you on a Saturday morning?
First, with a cup of coffee in my hands and then reading the scriptures for the day. After my personal quiet time, there is Morning Prayer and Mass. Then, I like to go for a walk or do some reading.