Vocation Story

Sr. Mary Dolores Carmel, O.Carm.

I was born in Southern California on February of 1993. I have six other siblings and I fall somewhere in the middle. My parents emigrated to the United States after the Civil War that occurred in El Salvador. Something I really appreciated growing up was my parents' hard work and their appreciation and gratitude for what they had. On several occasions, it was shown with family parties and Cumbia music. My greatest memories were the visits of grandparents which were special because they would come from El Salvador. My grandmother especially would have us pray the Rosary which we could only keep away from if we pretended to be asleep. She was so patient with us but corrected us when she had to which we all loved as her grandchildren.

After high school I attended my neighborhood community college- Santiago Canyon College. Then I was transferred to Ave Maria University and received my Bachelor in Economics. While working in a Donut Shop, my boss recommended I stay and help him grow in his family business as the General Manager. It was one of the best decisions I made during the time. I had the freedom to travel around the country in my leisure time. Even greater was the time for the SALT Mission Program.

While flying to Jerusalem, I asked God that I wanted to do something more meaningful that involved traveling. Then I noticed a friend request from SALT Missionaries on my Instagram App. From there I then completed a mission experience at the Sisters' facility of Mother Angeline McCrory Manor in Columbus, Ohio. The story of St. Elijah inspired me. It was in the way that he heard God in the silence that resonated in my heart. That silence opened my heart for a closeness I was afraid of and am continuing to reach. Even more, spending time with the residents reminded me of my childhood where I spent beautiful hours of talking and reading to my grandparents in Spanish. This Community has a clear vision of the love for the elderly seen through the eyes of Christ. I understood that when I read a quote of Mother Angeline (the Congregation's Foundress), "We are privileged to take care of the dying Christ in His Mystical Body."


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Sr. Mary Dolores Carmel, O.Carm.