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“I praise you, Lord, with all my heart, for the journey we have traveled together.”

Even since I felt called by Jesus, everything has been newness and adventure. To answer his call and to walk in his footsteps has not been easy, but it has been the most beautiful thing in my life.  He is the one who changed my life, who made my world rich in color. It has been a long journey, but I feel very fortunate that I have been able to abandon myself into his hands.

Having been part of an international formation experience has marked a “before and after” in my life; because crossing borders has allowed me to discover that we are one big family. I have come to know and experience in a more profound way the richness of our Providence Charism, Spirituality and Mission. I have met some unique people who are true witnesses of God’s love, women who have the Providence seal stamped within them and who have made history along with our three foundresses.

My sense of belonging to the congregation has increased even more. I am no longer only Bernarda’s daughter, but also Emilie’s and Joseph’s, “I am now a daughter of Providence.”

I am glad that I gave the best of myself in this experience, but I cannot forget that this was made possible thanks to each community and each Sister with whom I connected. I never felt isolated or far from home, as each one of them did her best to make me feel free and comfortable, they were patient and took time to understand me.  We already know that languages are a complicated matter, especially when sharing within a diversity of cultures.

Then August 15 finally arrived, the day I made my first profession!

The pandemic that accompanies us even today, and that has caused so much suffering and fear throughout the world changed all our plans, all our dreams. I never imagined I would have to make my first religious profession, which I had dreamed of for so long, far from home, far those I love the most, my family, my friends and my Sisters.

However, God, as usual had other plans for me, to make everything beautiful. When I remember my profession day, I can say with so much joy that it was the most beautiful and exciting day that I have ever lived. Everyone was there, all my Sisters, my family, my  friends, every one of them was there, nestled within my heart under the love and protection of my Beloved and that was the best thing that could ever happen. It was nothing like what I had been preparing for years, and nothing like what I had imagined all this time, just the abandonment into the hands of a Provident Father who always watches tenderly over me. Everything was perfect; everything was as God meant it to be.

“Providence of God, I thank you for all!”

Sister María Fernanda Apablaza