My name is Sister Liz Sjoberg and I am a Daughter of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, living in Emmitsburg, Maryland. I have had the pleasure of working for the Campus Ministry Office at Mount St. Mary’s University since completing novitiate in March 2009. My responsibilities include vocation formation opportunities, coordinating special events and retreats for high schoolers who come to campus, and participating in service projects, Music Ministry and Peer Ministry.
What I like most about working with college students is the opportunity to be a part of their lives and faith journeys. There is always something new and exciting happening, and every day is different. It is a privilege to be present to students in the happy times as well as the difficult ones. Young people today experience many trials, whether it is problems with broken families, addictions, issues with friends, or challenging studies. Also, I try to help them realize their own giftedness and beauty, which transforms the heart and goes far beyond the boundaries of campus. The face of Christ shines so brightly through them that I cannot help but be inspired.
A typical day begins with meditation and Morning Prayer with the sisters in my community. Daily Mass, which is the highlight of the day, gives us strength and focus to go and meet Christ in our ministries. Once I arrive to Mount St. Mary’s campus, my day is a mix of meetings, phone calls, emails, and simply being present to students. Some of the most important times of ministry have been when students come to the office to hang out, do homework, or share about what’s new in life. After a fruitful day, I return to the sisters’ house for evening prayer and dinner. One of my favorite things about this time is the opportunity to laugh, let loose, and enjoy each other’s company. We tell stories, talk about the day, and build an atmosphere of joy, fun, and prayerful support. Much like a family, we have ups and downs, but we sisters always have each other’s backs.
Anyone interested in religious life should know that God calls all kinds of people to be nuns, sisters, priests, or brothers. There is no “cookie-cutter” type; there is no mold. You will find wacky, fun, introverted, artsy, sporty, quiet, and loud people in religious life. You will find people with all kinds of backgrounds and life experiences. And if religious life is God’s call for you, you will find peace, contentment, and joy.