By Catherine Plishka
When I received a phone call from St. Joseph’s Home in Palatine for an interview, I knew it was meant to be (even before I officially became hired!). As a regular Mass attendee in the Little Sisters’ chapel along with previous experience volunteering and attending retreats there, I was always aware of the warm and caring atmosphere St. Joseph’s Home had to offer.
Since one of the main charisms of the Little Sisters’ spirituality is hospitality, I have come to realize that all who work for the Sisters are required to develop or nurture the same attitude of hospitality not only towards the Residents, but to all they come into contact with; visitors, delivery people, even co-workers.
For that reason, I can say that even though I’m a recent employee, being a receptionist at St. Joseph’s Home is very rewarding indeed. I love talking to the Residents as well as helping them in any way I can. From giving the Residents their mail, to even helping a Resident put on their coat, is so rewarding. Seeing their smiling faces is priceless and after all, it was St. Jeanne Jugan who said, “Making the elderly happy. That’s what counts.”
Although St. Jeanne Jugan is the patroness of the Little Sisters of the Poor, her simple spirituality reminds me so much of St. Therese the Little Flower to whom I have such great devotion. St. Joseph’s Home for the Elderly is the perfect place to do, “small things with great love,” as Mother Teresa said. When things get busy at the front desk I am greatly consoled by the words of St. Therese who said that it is still possible to remain little even in the most responsible position!
I owe God my gratitude for leading me to St. Joseph’s Home for I specifically asked Him to lead me to a place where I could be myself. Last but not least I owe my gratitude to St. Joseph whose intercession I invoked in my job search not only in my own home but at the Sisters’ chapel before and after Mass! Thank you, St. Joseph!