Sister Mary Philomena
of the Infant of Prague (Calderon), O.C.D.
My greatest blessing in religious life has been my Carmelite family of Sisters the Lord has given to me. I appreciate the Love Bond that supports us in Community in all that we do daily as we live our commitment, living our vows to the Lord. For me, primarily, is the daily Eucharistic celebration which nourishes, strengthens, and energizes my soul to radiate Jesus to all I will encounter including my Sisters in Community. I have a great love and devotion to Our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament for I can confidently speak to Him, with great faith and love.
Get to know Sister:
Where did you grow up?
In one word, how would you describe your time as a religious?
What drew you to Carmel?
- Blessed Mother and the Sacred Heart,
- the Rosary together as a family,
- and a strong devotion to the Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
What tips do you have for younger religious on how to persevere in their vocation?
To our younger Sisters, I would say… practice your Presence of God, be faithful to your good actions of the day… Humility…is the root that will help us on the road of perfection… Practice Charity, kindness, thoughtfulness which is the bond of perfection… Do what you do well solely for the love of God… Supernaturalize over and above all that you do for the love of God…To me, to persevere in their vocation it is important to spend some time with Our Lord, especially during adoration before Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. That no matter what temptations you go through, He is there. Sometimes you say “I hate to bother you, Lord, but this is what is happening. This is what I feel” or “I‘ve had it!” No kidding, He does help. He does! Don’t give up! Take one day at a time… Just look to our Blessed Mother. Just as her motherly love held Our Lord, so also does she hold us in her loving arms!
For you personally, what does it mean to be a Carmelite?
To be a Carmelite, the love of our Blessed Mother of Mount Carmel and the Sacred Heart prevails, daily rosary, my vows of poverty, chastity and obedience forever. I was a Carmelite since my birth because I was Baptized by a Carmelite priest, Father Simon Stock, OCD. Throughout my life, my devotion to Our Blessed Mother and the Sacred Heart, Carmelite spirituality also grew more deeply. As a Sister, I learned about the other great Carmelite saints and grew to love them deeply, i.e. Teresa, John of the Cross, Therese, etc.