When asked how I first heard about Maggie’s Place and how I ended up here, I usually respond casually with “It took a lot of help from the Holy Spirit.” I explain how I read about it in the Catholic Volunteer Network magazine and my professors in college really encouraged me to look into it. The rest is history!

Not often enough do I take the time to really reflect on what it means to be a MissionCorps member at Maggie’s Place. I have been doing more of it lately because I know my time here is drawing to a close. It is almost unbelievable that I was just reading about Maggie’s Place two years ago in that big purple edition of the Catholic Volunteer Network magazine. Let me tell you, its description does it no justice.

If you would have told me two years ago that I would experience just half of the highs and lows that I have experienced, I might have called you crazy. I know I would have told you that there would be no way I could handle all of it. Most of the time, I am still in shock at some of the things that have come my way. Whether laughing or crying, living at Maggie’s Place will certainly keep you on your toes.

There are some days when you get home from your day off at 9:00 am, eat breakfast, realize that a diaper has gone through the washing machine and is now clogging up the kitchen sink, call a plumber, deliver donations to another home, take a mom to a doctor appointment, go to Mass, come back home to be on duty, and wash the dishes in a plastic storage tub all before 7:00 pm. Or other days when you have meetings until 1:00 pm, babysit until 4:00 pm, have dinner, close the house down, take a mom to the hospital at 1:00 am and wake up at 6:00 am the next morning for an interview you have back at home for when your time as a MissionCorps is over.

It can be exhausting to say the least. What I have learned, however, is that living without a sink produces humility in abundance, hours of holding babies calms the soul, and those hospital runs in the wee hours of the night produce the most wonderful laughs and deep conversations. It is exhausting, but in such a blessed and beautiful way.

God asks us to trust Him, and not those little description guides in magazines, every minute while at Maggie’s Place. He then blesses us with the most precious moments in the midst of the craziness. While at times it seems my patience has never been so depleted, I know that my heart has never been so full at the same time.

It took a lot of help from the Holy Spirit to get me here, and it takes a lot of help from Him still, every day, but I know I wouldn’t change a single second of it.


By Clare Shear, a MissionCorps member