“She was Speaking about Martyrdom” | Sr. Ave Maria, O.P.

Raised in Irish Hills, Michigan, Sr. Ave Maria, a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville, entered the consecrated life after working at the University of Michigan Hospital as a nurse.

Sr. Ave Maria, O.P.: I went to a Franciscan University and it was really there that I saw young people on fire to be Catholic, to live their faith. [It was there] I discovered Eucharistic adoration for the first time. I learned that Faith growing up but it really didn’t go from my head to my heart until I went to the university; it was such a gift.

[In] my last year I started dating a young man (now a priest for the Diocese of Washington D.C.); the Lord, you know, works through every little detail

Sr. Joseph Andrew, O.P.: Would you have ever thought when you were dating him that he’d make a good priest?

Sr. Ave Maria, O.P.: Actually. Yes. We always considered the possibility that God could be could be asking that of us, but it wasn’t a reality for me until I saw all of you.

Sr. Joseph Andrew, O.P.: Sister, was it difficult when you entered to realize that your degree in nursing (and you were already nursing at the University of Michigan hospital), was it difficult to change from that to say, “Now I’m going to go back and get a degree in teaching?”

Sr. Ave Maria, O.P.: The fact that you all taught really was not an obstacle. I knew when I met you that I was supposed to enter; it didn’t matter what you did – we always know that it’s our consecration and the apostolate flows from that. But I remember thinking, “They teach and I don’t even have a desire to teach. Maybe God is calling me somewhere else.” It certainly was not an obstacle. I was so attracted to just give my life to the Lord and it didn’t matter what they did but I do keep up my nursing license.

It’s been exciting to be part of thinking through what we’re going to do to protect our Sisters; to keep that many women living together during this [COVID-19] pandemic has been a challenge and yet God’s grace is sufficient and many good things have come out of it.


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