Sister Elizabeth Miller tells her vocation story
As a young girl I joined the Y.C.W (Young Catholic Workers).in our parish and we enjoyed great times together. However, I had itchy feet and wanted to travel. The opportunity came with an add in the local paper for work at the Roslyn Woollen Mill in Dunedin, New Zealand. The contract of work was travel expenses paid for 12 months work. Not having a lot of money, it sounded a good idea. So, to New Zealand I went. We lived in a Hostel owned by the Mill. There were girls from Australia, England and Scotland. We had many happy walks around Dunedin, shopping Friday nights, dancing every Saturday night and in the holidays, hitch hiking from Dunedin to Christchurch and touring around the South Island.
I joined the Dunedin Y.C.W. and made friends with a girl who was taking instructions in the Catholic Faith. After some months she asked me to go with her to the Little Sisters. I agreed and she made all the arrangements to visit one Sunday afternoon.
I knew of the Little Sisters as once a year in the Catholic paper, they advertised for their Pound Day Appeal. Ad well as that, different parishes of Y.C.W. members went to the home in Adelaide to volunteer - but I always had an excuse not to go!
Sunday arrived, we each bought a block of chocolate to give to a needy resident. We were greeted by a Little Sister and the Mother Superior who showed us around the home. When we saw the residents all looking contended, warm, happy, it made an impression on me. We arranged to volunteer at the home on Saturdays.
The first Saturday came and I had the opportunity to go to Queenstown to see a friend from the Y.C.W.in Adelaide, Since I had come to see around New Zealand, volunteering at the Sisters was secondary. However, my friend kept the appointment and I went the next week. God was very patient with me. This fortnight volunteering did give me a great knowledge of the work with the elderly and the spirit of the Little Sisters. When I finished the twelve months at the mill I went to work at the Little Sisters until I returned to Australia. So today I am still on a working holiday. The pay isn’t wonderful, but the bonuses are out of this world. The love of the Lord and His strength is always there to guide me, and, as our Foundress said: “If God is with us He will not abandon us.”