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Episode 35 — Loving and Growing in Spiritual Motherhood

Sr. Joyce Bermejo, FMA (far right) with her sister Sr. Rosaria, OP, and brother John.

In this episode, Sr. Joyce and I talked about:

  • We recorded this episode on March 24, which was a day of consecration of the world to Mary in response to the Coronavirus

  • The founder of the Daughters of Mary, Help of Christians, St. John Bosco

  • The co-foundress and very first Salesian Sister, St. Mary Mazzarello

  • Who the Salesian Sisters are and their charism

  • Sr. Joyce's faith journey and vocation story

  • The formation period of the Salesian Sisters: Aspirancy, Postulancy, Novitiate

  • The extra-special relationship she has with her younger sister, Sr. Rosaria, OP (READ MORE)

  • Spiritual motherhood

  • The book "Interior Freedom" by Fr. Jacques Philippe (LEARN MORE)

  • Discerning religious life—making time for personal prayer, don't divide yourself and your vocation, discover what your gift and talents are, go to a Come and See, be at peace!

  • St. Ignatius of Loyola and the Spiritual Exercises (READ MORE)

This episode comes out on May 25, one day after the Feast of Mary, Help of Christians. This feast is particularly important for the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, also known as the Salesian Sisters! And on this episode, I had the privilege to interview Sr. Joyce Bermejo, FMA.

In 2018, Sr. Joyce made her religious profession with the Salesians. She currently lives in Cornwall, Ontario, Canada with other Salesian sisters. I came to know about Sr. Joyce through this amazing article written by Agnieszka Ruck on the Bermejo family, On a personal level, her family still lives in the same city I do, and our siblings are dating! Please pray for them and their discernment.

I really enjoyed this conversation with Sr. Joyce - we talked about her vocation journey, how she came to know about the Salesian Sisters, and she also shares advice on discerning the will of God for your life.

Take a listen to our conversation:

"I think that as a religious, this is where God is calling me to be a saint. So what am I doing every day to grow into that person, while at the same time accepting myself as I am?" — Sr. Joyce Bermejo, FMA
The Bermejo family in Nashville.

Meet Sr. Joyce Bermejo, FMA

Sr. Joyce Bermejo is a Daughter of Mary Help of Christians, also known as a Salesian sister. She made her religious profession on August 5th, 2018 in Newton, NJ, USA and moved to Cornwall, Ontario afterward.

Sr. Joyce immigrated to Canada with her mom, dad, younger brother and sister, who also happens to be a religious sister. (She is a Dominican Sister of St. Cecilia based in Nashville, TN.)

Thanks to her involvement with the youth ministry called Couples for Christ-Youth in her hometown Surrey, B.C., as well as her personal relationship with Christ and living out her Catholic sacramental life, she discovered her calling to religious life. She found deep joy in serving young people, as well as in nurturing a personal relationship with Jesus and Mary. She entered the Salesian Sisters right after graduating from university in 2014.

As a Salesian Sister, she serves the youth in Cornwall, ON, through a weekly Salesian Youth Centre at the convent, where she and her fellow Salesian Sisters encounter children and youth from local elementary and high schools. She serves at a local high school where she teaches religion and faith lessons. She is currently studying Early Childhood Education, a two-year full-time program, at St. Lawrence College in Cornwall. 

Sr. Joyce follows the footsteps St. John Bosco, founder of Salesian Sisters, and co-foundress, St. Mary Mazzarello, who both gave their lives for the good of young people. "Give me souls, take away the rest!" - St. John Bosco.

There are over 11,000+ Salesian Sisters around the world. Sr. Joyce belongs to the Province of St. Joseph which consists of the Eastern U.S. and Canada.


Want to learn more about the Salesian Sisters? You can visit the following websites:

Salesian Sisters in Canada

Salesian Sisters in the Province of St. Joseph (Eastern U.S. and Canada)

You can also follow the Salesian Sisters on social media!


Twitter: @Salesian_Sister

Instagram: @saleisiansisters and @salesian_cornwall

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