Choosing the Path of Service
Sr Célestine de la Croix, Holland
I was born March 3, 1919 at Wanroy, Holland and I grew up in a Christian family. I was the eldest of four children. We had a carefree childhood. At school, I had a teacher who taught me the love for God and for others. I was deeply touched and I really wanted to live that way.
After my 16th anniversary, I went to Druten “Boldershof”, an Institute for young women with mental and physical disabilities. There, I was not only seduced by the work, but I almost immediately felt at home with the Daughters of Wisdom. Their spirituality, their way of life, their commitment and relationship with the residents touched me. I gradually became aware that this was the path I wanted to follow.
I entered the Novitiate in February 1940. In May of the same year, war broke out and we had to evacuate and go to France finding refuge at the Mother-House in Saint-Laurent-sur-Sèvre. These were uncertain and stressful times. More than a year later, we could return to the Netherlands and in February 1942, I made profession at Schimmert.
I then received my obedience for Boldershof. I lived and worked there in different circumstances during 50 years. I tried to live the charism and the spirituality of our Founders Montfort and MarieLouise, in prayer and love. Sr. Ancilla Maria Fijen was very supportive.
“Guided by my faith in the unconditional love of God, I encounter Him in every person.” (Cfr Ps. 138) Now that I am old, I continue to experience being of service every day, and I am grateful for it.
To the young generation I express this wish: “May the passionate desire to serve challenge you to give meaning and content to your life everywhere in the world! “