My name is Sr. Kathleen Hopkins and I was born and lived in Stockport, Cheshire, in the North West of England. Prior to joining the Cenacle I worked in a bank and then later became a nurse. I joined the Cenacle in 1970. I have been engaged in a great variety of retreat work with both adults and youth both in a retreat house and outside. My ministry has also included giving various types of workshops- helping people with their human and spiritual growth. I am a spiritual director and psychotherapist and work in a parish doing adult formation and catechesis. I have been involved in various forms of leadership in my Province.
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Q. When did you first become aware that you might have a call to religious life?
My first sense of a call to religious life was aged fourteen at a vocations exhibition
Q. Why did you choose the Cenacle Sisters?
I chose the Cenacle because I felt “at home” and was drawn to the spiritual side of the ministry. The spirit and life of the foundress inspired me.
Q What is the best thing about Religious Life?
There are too many good things about Religious life to mention them all. Some important one’s are-belonging to a group of people committed to their own relationship to Christ and concerned for the human and spiritual well-being of others. Being supported in one’s life and ministry
Q. What have you found most difficult?
Through the years different things have been more difficult depending on the situation in general-accepting and living with different personality types. Criticism for not meeting others expectations and a lack of trust and acceptance of one’s own needs.
Q What is most rewarding about your current ministry?
Most rewarding about my current ministry is seeing people come to a greater sense of freedom in their life, finding meaning, accepting themselves. Also helping people to discover or deepen their relationship with God and know themselves loved and accepted, and let go of guilt and shame. Teaching people to pray, Encouraging and listening to young people in their search.
Q. What is the most challenging?
Most challenging at present is how to get known. How to find ways of ministering to non-church goers. Trying to be financially viable. Working mostly alone.
Q. What supports you in your ministry?
I’m supported in ministry by my own prayer and spiritual direction. Sharing the ups and downs with friends and sharing ideas and experience. Meeting together as a Province to share life and ministry.
Q. Any tips on how to pray?
Be in touch with what you desire re God etc. and trust God will respond. Find some time to be consciously in the presence of God and come as you are whatever that might be. Use the Jesuit prayer sites as an aid e.g. “Pray and Go”
Q. Giving advice is always a bit risky, however what is the best bit you have been given?
If you have nothing good to say about someone say nothing!
Q. Name three people, alive or from history, you would invite for a meal?
Sr. Mary Ann Carroll rc, Desmond Tutu, Cliff Richard