Here are more good questions from the students at the Academy of Mt. St. Ursula in the Bronx. These questions were asked of Sr. Karen Schwane, OSU who lives in Laredo, Texas.

What motivated you to become an Ursuline Sister?  I felt an invitation from God. I grew up in Dallas in a religious environment. Holy Trinity parish and elementary school were two blocks away. I’d walk with my mom to daily Mass. Families in our neighborhSchwane_Golden Jubileeood gathered weekly in homes to pray the rosary together. My older brother had become a Vincentian priest. For high school I attended Ursuline Academy, Dallas. After our Senior retreat one of the Sisters recommended that I pray an extra 15 minutes every morning and think about my vocation. Eventually I knew that I wanted to give religious life a try. I’m glad that I did!

How has your life changed since you became a Sister?  Well, my life has changed on the inside AND the outside. Just looking at these two photos will give you an idea of some of the changes. I entered the Ursulines after graduating from high school. I left my mother, brother and sister, my friends and social life, my summer jobs, my home in Dallas, Texas and moved to Crystal City, Missouri. That’s where the early years of our initial formation took place. There was a different climate and lots of people I’d never met before. In those days UrsEPSON MFP imageulines were cloistered so we didn’t go out of the convent very much. It was a new lifestyle for me, with specific times for getting up and going to bed, eating, study, and prayer. Our schedule included reading, singing, sewing, house chores — and hikes and picnics on Thursdays! After the novitiate (2 years of intense spiritual formation), we went to college and then began teaching in one of our Ursuline schools.

This year I’m celebrating my Golden Jubilee of Ursuline life. These 50 years have been filled with innumerable changes and experiences that have brought me to where I am today — a woman who is happy and grateful for all the rich blessings and graces that God has give to me.