As prepared by Mother Olga of the Sacred Heart, January 2012
The passage of the Annunciation has always had a special place in my spiritual life, particularly in my vocational journey. When I was received into the Roman Catholic Church, I chose the passage of the Annunciation to be the reading for the Marian Mass on that day. It was that same reading that I chose on the day of my final vows. This passage rests in my heart, because very often I feel like our Blessed Mother at the moment of the Annunciation. It is a feeling as though God is calling me to do the impossible, trusting that He will help me to accomplish it, and yet wondering how it will all happen.
Since 1991 there have been three major “annunciation” moments which God has put before me. The first of these was when I was called to start the Missionaries of the Virgin Mary, the first religious order for women in the Assyrian Church of the East in 700 years. The second moment came when I felt drawn to enter into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church despite the risk of losing my community. The third moment happened when Cardinal Seán O’Malley invited me four years ago to begin discerning the task of establishing a new religious order for women within the Archdiocese of Boston.
In February of 2011, the Lord made it clear to Cardinal Seán and to me that the time had come to move forward with the foundation of this new order. As with the first two “annunciation” moments, when I felt called by the Lord, I found myself wondering how this could be. Knowing my past and my background makes me feel as overwhelmed as Mary, woman of the Annunciation, must have felt on that day. This is not a sense of being overwhelmed by a great burden but rather a feeling of awe at the great undertakings which God is entrusting to me, and working through me. I am truly humbled by the Lord’s trust in my nothingness, which is made evident through the Cardinal’s invitation. I shared with my spiritual director that I feel very unworthy of the task which the Lord is asking me to accomplish. God has shown His power by moving me from small and humble origins to do great things for Him.