By Terry and Tom Marinkovich

Our Carmelite Story begins with an invitation to a Carmelite Concert hosted by some dear friends. We had conflicting invitations for that evening (both being very special invitations) but we chose to attend the Sisters’ concert. Praise the Lord! That was the beginning of a great blessing in our lives and a renewed sense of hope for our world that through the Carmelites’ deep dedication to the Catholic Church, we may begin to heal our wounds and find peace and joy in an otherwise chaotic world. The Carmelites are committed to spreading the Word of God, dedicating their lives to those less fortunate, to healthcare, education and most importantly to prayer. We felt like a miracle happened in our lives when we met the Carmelites.

Both my husband and I attended Catholic schools all the way through college. We felt blessed to be educated and guided by wonderful priests and sisters and we wanted to give back to those dedicated Religious. With gratitude, we supported these institutions for years and then, to our dismay, we became very saddened and disillusioned with the secular changes that we witnessed. Our beloved nuns and priests had succumbed to secular pressure instead of adhering to Catholic doctrine. It broke our hearts! At that point, we felt compelled to discontinue our support and to share our treasure where our Catholic values are supported.

Since that first concert, my husband and I have had more opportunities to be with the dear Carmelite Sisters and each time we leave, we always have smiles on our faces, a renewed hope for the future of the Catholic Church, a renewed dedication to supporting the good works of the Carmelites and a sense of the Holy Spirit deep within our hearts.

As the saying goes… ”to know Him, is to love Him”. This is like the mantra of the Carmelites. They know “Him” and they love “Him” and it shows in everything they do. All you need to do is look in the face of a Carmelite and you see “Him”. God shines through in so many ways…their kindness, their joy, their smiles, their compassion, their wonderful sense of humor, their beautiful music but mostly their deep love for Our Lord. It is hard to describe, but it is real. It is beautiful and it is catching!!

We’d like to especially thank the Carmelite Sisters for reaching out to our son who was battling cancer. We thank them for their continued prayers and compassion at his passing and for the beautiful music they provided at his Memorial. We did not know them well, but they reached out and it will never be forgotten.

If you want to meet an earth angel…meet a Carmelite. Your soul will never be the same! You will smile, you will laugh, you will learn, you may even cry but you will definitely be touched!

May God bless the Carmelite Sisters in their mission to profess the love of God through their good works, their prayers, their outreach and dedication to the Catholic Church. May they be blessed with many vocations, with the financial and spiritual support to continue the work of their Founder, Mother Luisita and may they feel the love from all those whose lives they have touched.

God bless the Carmelites!