My Inspiration to become a Sister Servant of the Blessed Sacrament
Sr. Susana Del Toro Vargas, SJS: My mother laid the foundation of my vocation. I remember her praying the rosary and visiting the Blessed Sacrament with such a faith that I was sure she had received what she was praying for. When I came to the United States, I met the Sister Servants of the Blessed Sacrament in Sacramento, California. I was a member of the youth group, a lector and a choir member in my parish. I was also studying and working full time. One day, the sisters invited me to the Holy Hour they had every Friday afternoon at the convent. The idea of becoming a sister really didn’t cross my mind. In fact, when Sr. Maria Elvia Gonzalez asked me if I would like to join the convent, I answered, “I’m not crazy!”
But even then, God was working on my heart. I began to seriously consider the idea. I prayed and I gradually came to know in my heart and soul that He was asking me to respond to his calling. In the silence of my prayers, I finally found my answer: yes, I did want to live a religious life. I want to be with God! I want to serve God
Shortly after, I attended a sister’s retreat and learned more about their ministry. I didn’t want to be a teacher, though; I wanted to help the poor, the hopeless, the castoffs of society. Then I remembered the inspiring words of our founder, Fr. Silviano: Education is the solution to many problems in our society; knowing Christ is what can change the human heart and inspire us to work for a more just and peaceful world. Then I knew God was leading me to an unknown path, but I was not afraid. I knew He was always with me. Two years of soul searching followed. I entered the convent, even though my family didn’t support my vocation. It was so painful to leave my parents and brothers and sisters, but when I said “yes” to God, he sustained me in my decision and has been my constant love and support every day.
I appreciate the fact that in my teaching I am able to make a difference in the life of others. Because God makes the difference in my life, my prayer becomes the love in my heart, the strength of my hands, the knowledge in my brain and the word in my mouth. He gives me the courage to face the challenges of everyday living. I thank God for the great gift of my vocation, a vocation that means mystery, action, adventure, sacrifice, commitment, fidelity, fulfillment, happiness, and above all, love. I pray He will grant me the grace to love Him deeply until the day I die.
Sr. Katia Chávez, SJS: Although, I was close to God, I did not want to become a religious sister. I was attracted to sports. I played soccer, volleyball and was in aerobics. Nevertheless, I also was inclined to things of heaven and loved Bible stories, so I became a catechist. We met every weekend for Catechist Formation program, but I would first check the basketball court before assisting in those classes.
One day I found a handsome young man playing basketball with some altar servers and asked if I could join them. The following weekend, I went in haste to the parish basketball court to find again that young gentleman. I found no one and decided to attend the formation classes. Later, the leader of the catechist group introduced us to “our future priest” with a round of applause. It was the young man I had met at the basketball court. My mind went crazy thinking it was not fair for someone so good looking to end up as Priest!
Though I was still attracted to him, In time I came to learn that it was not his physical appearance but rather the light of the love by which he lived his life and treated others. On the day of his ordination to Priesthood, I heard a voice. It was clear, profound, piercing, and determined, “If he can give his young life for the church, so can you!” Although, I tried to put it off, the voice kept coming to me insisting I should go. I came to believe God had put him in my path to light the way.
I felt the need to inquire about religious life. The more I knew about it, the more I liked it! Finally, when I said “Yes, Lord!” My life changed! I accepted the Lord as my Lord and Savior and I was immeasurably joyful! From that point onward, I always prayed that all young people find their vocation so they can be as happy as I am. One thing I knew, I wanted to continue teaching bible stories, and I wanted to continue finding the Lord in adoration to the Blessed Sacrament. I found both in the Sister Servants of the Blessed Sacrament. I made my First Profession in 2000 and I can say with unreserved confidence, it is for a better world that I sacrificed my own family and children to be a disciple of Christ and to be a member of the Sister Servants of the Blessed Sacrament.