I believe the seeds of my vocation were planted by the faith of my family and by the Sisters of Charity who witnessed to me the possibility of living a life of consecrated service in community.
I saw how the Sisters truly cared for us, but I was most taken with their loving way of relating to one another. ‘Sister’ was a relationship, not a title. My parents did not exactly jump for joy when I told them I wanted to become a Sister, but let me follow the leaning of my heart. I joined the community five years before the start of Vatican II, little realizing how soon afterwards my congregation was going to change radically. There was a ‘thrill of hope’ in the community as we sought to respond to the signs of our times as the Council documents encouraged us to do. After pronouncing my first vows I was sent ‘on mission’ to several elementary and high schools in the New York area. Missionary work followed: in Arizona among the Navajo and Hopi Indians, and for a longer time in Nassau, Bahamas.
When I returned to the States I became a member of our Formation Team, companioning women who wished to explore vowed membership with us. I was then elected to congregational leadership for eight challenging years. And now I have come to a new moment of ministry as a spiritual and retreat director, writer, and presenter on topics of spirituality and my own Charity charism, a blessed place to be!
Sr. Mary E. McCormick is a spiritual and retreat director, writer, and presenter on topics of spirituality and the Charity charism. She served in congregational leadership and formation ministry, and as a missionary in the Bahamas and in Arizona. Sr. Mary first met the Sisters of Charity at Ascension School and Blessed Sacrament H.S., both in Manhattan.