Laura, what are you doing this summer?
I'm doing an internship program called Spring into Service with the Little Sisters of the Poor in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. I serve in a nursing home where I help with meals, activities, and entertainment.
How did you hear about this opportunity?
When I went to the FOCUS SEEK conference, I was booth hopping between all the religious orders. I have been discerning the religious life, so I was learning about different orders. The Little Sisters of the Poor had a booth. I'm in nursing school at ESU, and I enjoy working with the elderly, so this sounded perfect.
Why did you decide to use your summer in this way?
I started discerning the religious life in October. This opportunity seemed like a good fit. I'm a CNA and the last several summers I've been working at a nursing home, so I would be doing the same thing anyway! This opportunity lets me learn about the religious life, and I still get paid for the internship.
What have you learned?
I haven't had much interaction with sisters before this. I have loved meeting them and seeing what the religious life is like. I love seeing how all the sisters are different and unique. They are normal like you and me.
What is your favorite part?
All of it!
One thing I found very, very beautiful, though, is how they treat the dying here. When someone is nearing death, all the sisters and volunteers come together and make a schedule so that the dying person will be accompanied 24/7 until they pass away. They're never alone.
*Photo captions: Top photo, Laura visits the beach with the sisters. She is in the back row, third from the right. Bottom photo, A statue of Jesus and Mary caring for an elderly person. This statue is in one of the Little Sisters' chapels in New Jersey.