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placeholder July 13, 2015   •   VOL. 53, NO. 13   •   Oakland, CA

Dominican Sister to make first profession

Sister Christina Atienza will make her first profession of vows next month, after completing a year as a candidate, a year as a novice and a year of ministry with the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael.


Sister Christina Atienza

Manila, Philippines; moved to San Francisco Bay Area when 18 years old

Education: Bachelor and master of science degrees in civil engineering, University of California at Berkeley; theology courses at Graduate Theological Union.

Previous ministry: Parish ministries at the Cathedral of Christ the Light; Cursillo; St. Vincent de Paul.

Current ministry: Dominican University Campus Minister where she promotes the Dominican heritage and ideals of reflection, service, community and study and facilitates interfaith spiritual engagement and development of students and staff.
"For me the idea of religious life was basically a response to a mid-life crisis," she said. "Pursuing my career as a transportation engineer and planner was a fulfilling endeavor that sustained me for over two decades and gave me a significant amount of independence.

"In 2009, though, I found myself hooked by this inexplicable sense of joy when I began to really get involved in parish ministries. Before I knew it, I had become not just a workaholic, but also a Churchaholic! Not too long after, I began to feel a longing for integration, focus and balance, to which the discernment of religious life with the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael ultimately emerged as the answer.

"During my candidacy, I found treasures that far surpassed the value of the possessions and the independence that I gave up when I entered: deep connections, self-awareness, a vibrant prayer life, peace, and yes — even greater joy.

"Now my longing is to become the person that God intends, understanding that that entails embracing a life of faith and interdependence. I am so grateful to be on this path and for all the love and support."

To read more about the congregation she is part of, the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael, visit www.sanrafaelop.org.

If you feel called to religious life, contact Nan Brenzel, director of Vocation Ministries at 415-257-4939 or sanrafaelvocations@gmail.com.

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