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Sr. Kuniko Ochiai

Sr. Kuniko Ochiai

This is a story I heard from one of our senior Sisters.

While working for a company like most people I asked myself if I was content with life. Is it what I want? No matter how hard I worked I never felt satisfied I wanted something meaningful and lasting. One day a co-worker asked me if I was interested in going to a Catholic Church with her. I asked my mother for permission to visit the church. The following day after work I visited the Catholic Church for the first time. I entered the chapel and sat down I noticed a dim red light and I felt as if I was surrounded by solemn and warm silence. I also attended a ceremony for newly accepted nuns I was very impressed with the ceremony. I thought to myself that vocational life must be meaningful and everlasting. In reality it seemed I had no way out I had no dowry and I have not been baptized in over two years. My mother had rejected my idea of vocation and told me not to mention it to her again.

I shared my thoughts with a priest and he and replied " People wish for vocation when they are young" When I kneeled down and looked up at the cross I thought how Jesus suffered and shed his blood for us. At that moment I was sure about how I felt inside and my wish to follow the lord who loves me this much. I met the priest once who more and this time he suggested that I write to some convents for detailed information. I did as he suggested and the first letter I received was from The Daughters of St. Paul. I shared the letter with the priest who told me I should visit the convent. I decided to visit the Fukuoka branch after my visit I went to the priest again he said to me " You received your baptism on the holiday of St. Paul and St. Paul is calling you." The priest gave his signature of permission for me to enter the convent. I was able to quit my job at the kindergarten because my Godmother offered to take over my position.

I was extremely happy about my vocation but my mother was not happy with my decision. In the end my mother allowed me to attend the convent but made it very clear she did not approve. I was told my mother suffered and almost lost her memory because she was shocked by my decision. I was very upset learning how I hurt my mother but the support from the senior Sisters prayers and my trust in the Lord helped me through it. After some time I heard from my sister that my mother said I chose the correct master. My mother had attended my first petition and wished she could be more faithful, I prayed for my family to share the joy of religion. I asked my mother to pray with me on every seasonal ceremony and my mother received her baptism as I was to swear my lasting petition. I followed St. Paul who said "Grace of the Lord will never be ruined within him" and I wish to be faithful for the rest of my life.

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