All of us remain, always, on a spiritual pilgrimage.  Sister Faith Anthony’s reflections on the aftermath of her life profession in the Order of St. Helena speak eloquently to this:

On January 4, the Order of St Helena elected me to make my Life Vow, and I did so on March 19 at the Church of the Good Shepherd.

The service was lovely, and so was the reception. I was in the seventh heaven that night. Yet I had not really expected any change. Yes, now I am given the big cross, and the ring, but I had been under the temporary Vow for three years, and I had been living in the same Order for five years.

However, the next morning, when I entered the chapel, I felt, “This is different!” I felt that I had crossed an invisible threshold, and I am not the same person as the day before.

What I sensed was unspoken “acceptance” and “welcome.” God confirmed the call. I said “Yes” and the Order said “Yes.” Now I am in full service for God with these sisters for my life. The sisters received me as one of theirs in spite of all my shortcomings, trusting God’s intention and my willingness to grow. This is a pure gift. And I realize that what I vowed is a far deeper commitment than I had imagined, and now I have a huge responsibility to the Order.

The honeymoon period did not last long, not even a few days. I started perceiving the cost. Also – how easy it is not to remember my Vow (or even my baptism)! I cannot count how many times I have fallen into a ditch and said, “Why are you so disquieted within me, O my soul? (in other words, ‘I am getting the hell out of here!’).” If I say, “Lord, I am not high minded,” God smiles and says, “Really?” God asks me, “Are you really mine?” I still have far, far to go. Yet – God gave me a full invitation, so I shall walk.

It does not seem to really matter what I do. The important thing is to be present, and take up my cross and follow Jesus; which is – to accept myself as I am, and say, “Here I am, use/send me.” Even if I am on that cross and everybody is watching me, it is my duty to trust in God’s good intention and let Christ’s light radiate through that cross.

I cannot fulfill the Vow on my own. What I can do and am supposed to do is to throw myself into the hands of the Living God and trust – day by day, moment by moment, and operate from there. It is indeed a venture of faith. I do not expect any rosy-color life ahead of me. Yet still, if I keep saying yes to God, I believe, this is the happiest life.

With my whole-hearted thanks to all the sisters, the Church of the Good Shepherd, those who came to witness my Vow, and those who prayed for us.

Sr Faith Anthony, OSH