Sr. Mary Donovan, USA:I remember one meeting in particular that she led with the girls called “Retarded Souls.” It was so funny.
In the time that I knew her, I can’t think of anyone who after having met her, wasn’t left impressed by her personality and her joy. Yet, with all the natural gifts she had, she always used them for the Lord. She had an incredible gift of being able to connect with people of all ages: children, teens, adults, the elderly… and win them over for the Lord. The times we coincided in activities with girls, I witnessed how she never wasted a moment to do apostolate. In the car, if we had to wait to go somewhere or do something – it didn’t matter when or where – she would always try to make the most of the time by telling stories, singing songs, or asking the girls questions. When she spoke to the girls or shared experiences with them, you could tell that she always did it with the intention of making them think so that they would reflect on their lives and ask the Lord what they needed to change.
I remember one meeting in particular that she led with the girls called “Retarded Souls.” It was so funny. She talked about the different things that can hold us back from allowing our souls to make progress in the spiritual life. Needless to say, she had all the girls and the Sisters almost in tears because we were laughing so hard with her examples. At the same time, I noticed that when she wanted to make a serious point, she was very clear and direct, and didn’t hide or try to soften the truth. Her capacity to speak the truth and use humor made it very easy to accept what she said, even if what she was talking about implied that some of the girls would have to make a big change in lifestyle. I think the girls were especially receptive to her because she related well to them and understood the challenges they faced. She had no problem warning them about certain dangers and calling them on to greater things. She spoke from experience and really knew what it meant to fight against sin but she never spoke about it in a negative light, but rather she always inspired hope.
The girls were always impressed by the fact that even after all the success she had before becoming a Sister, she had absolutely no regrets of giving her life totally to God. She transmitted true happiness and I think they were always left with a great desire to have the same happiness she possessed.
To be continued.