*Sr. Mary of Jesus will not be taking more discerners at this time*
Greetings, my name is Sr. Mary of Jesus O’Donovan O Carm. I have been a Carmelite Sister for the Aged and Infirm for the past 40 years. I am from Co. Tipperary, Ireland where my siblings, one sister and five brothers reside. I came to know the Congregation while working at Our Lady’s Manor in Dublin, one of the facilities run by our community. I came to the US in 1980 and upon completion of my novitiate; I served in two of our facilities in New York. During that time, I also completed training, at St. John’s University in Queens, New York and Adelphi University in Garden City, New York obtaining a Masters in Social Work. I returned to Ireland in 1996 and trained as a Psychotherapist. I worked as a Medical Social Worker and Psychotherapist in Our Lady’s Manor, Dublin Ireland for 19 years. I returned to the US in 2015 and assumed the role of Vocation Director and Director of our SALT Mission Program (Serving the Aged Lovingly Today) a service program for young adult women.
I was deeply influenced by the Presentation Sisters who taught me in high school, in particular a sister whose holiness I felt attracted too. She had something different and I wanted it, the way she prayed, her presence etc., One day while walking in the school grounds, I heard a voice say, “I want you to be like her”. My first reaction was, “God you have to be kidding”, I admired her, but to enter religious life was not for me, or so I thought at the time. Being only 14 yrs. old, I put the idea on the back burner and did not think about religious life again until I encountered the Carmelite Sisters in Dublin. Their spirit of Hospitality, joy, prayer, and Mission to the Aged & Infirm felt so attractive.
At 22, I entered the Carmelite Sisters in the US and the rest is history as they say. I can absolutely say with utter confidence that “The will of God will never take you where the Grace of God cannot protect you.” During my 40 years of Religious life, I have known His love, Faithfulness, and grace to be constant. Religious Life is not about feeling but about knowing deep down that inner peace He alone can give.
I love walking, playing the Irish tin whistle, Irish dancing, spending quiet moments in nature and am particularly drawn to quiet moments in prayer. I love the Carmelite Saints, especially St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross. My favorite quote is from Eph: 3:20 “Glory be to Him whose power at work in me can do infinitely more than I can ask or imagine”.