I read the letter my niece sent to her parents. I looked at my sister as I put it down; I was in shock. My niece, 19 years old, a sophomore in college, was pregnant. The letter began, “Dear Mom and Dad, I have been challenged with my Catholic faith since starting college.” She wrote about not going to church on a regular basis and not following the teachings she learned as a child. The next words were shocking: “I am pregnant.” Struggling with these words, all I could say to my sister was, “Oh my.” My niece asked, “Can I come home to live with you?”

Home is where she knew she would feel loved and supported. Home is where she knew she would be reminded of the faith she grew up with, getting back in touch with the values that holds her family together. Her baby is due in July; this happened last Thanksgiving. I love my niece, and I support her as she lives into this new life journey. Home is where she will be loved and supported. When I think of home, my heart goes in two directions. I am reminded of my childhood home and then of my current home here at Saint Benedict’s Monastery. Home is where I feel loved and supported in my life vocation.

If you would like more information about Saint Benedict’s Monastery, please contact Sister Lisa Rose at lrose@csbsju.edu.

Lisa Rose, OSB

Photo: Front view of Saint Benedict’s Monastery