The Daughters of Charity, just like other religious orders, make the usual vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. However, we also make an additional vow–a vow of service to those who live in poverty. Each Daughter of Charity renews her vows every year on the Feast of the Annunciation of the Lord.
As a Daughter of Charity, the vow of service to the poor is the prism through which I view the other three vows: poverty, chastity, and obedience. I experienced the invitation from Jesus to give my life to God and, with my “yes,” God gave me to the poor. Poverty allows me to see that all I have belongs to the poor. Chastity frees me to love all in the human family, especially the poor and forgotten. Obedience awakens my conscious and deliberate choice to seek God’s plan each day.
Pope Francis calls us to leave our comfort zones and to go to the peripheries to find the “wounded.” Every day, Jesus invites me to follow Him. I delight in the gift of my life as a Daughter of Charity–given to God, in community, for the service of those who are poor.
Written by Sister Maureen Houlihan, D.C.