“You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are right, for that is what I am.” (John 13:13)

“Jesus has many roles: the Good Shepherd, the Vine, the Teacher, He has all of these wonderful Christological titles. It is so rewarding to participate in His work because He is the ultimate teacher.

I am a professor at a Seminary. As teachers, we have to remember that it is not only our role to educate others and pass on knowledge to the next generation, but we must also remember that Jesus was also a life skills teacher too. He taught us how to forgive, how to manage with our anger, how to be kind to others, how to love and so much more. It is my job to teach doctrine and the curriculum, but also to teach these life skills that Jesus taught: how to be humble, to be virtuous, how to be kind. I try to incorporate Jesus’ life teachings into my lectures. Sometimes it feels like I am being paid to be a Christian. I love being able to teach. I am so passionate about my vocation as a theologian, and if it is God’s will, I will retire at the seminary.

With that said, I am open to whatever God has planned for me. I try to apply this to my life as much as possible. That’s what I love about Carmelite spiritually. Carmelites emphasize the need to trust God’s will, to not worry about searching and being restless. God will bring the work to us. If it is for you, someone will call and say, “Hey, I saw a job and I think it’s perfect for you” or “I know this guy and I think you guys would be great together.” He will bring it to fulfillment if it is in His will for your life.

Jesus inspired St. Teresa of Avila when he said to her in a private moment, “You take care of my business and I will take care of your business.” Trust and know that God has a plan for you. It is easy to get restless, to think, “Is there something else that is better, or should I be doing more?” “What’s next?” St. Thérèse of the Little Flower and St. Paul remind us that love should be our motivation for all actions and words, regardless of where we are. Even if God is calling you to work at a Walmart for the rest of your life, at the end of your life it won’t be the credentials that you have, it will be, ‘did you love in that role?’. Someone could have a long list of credentials and not love their neighbor, using their gifts for personal gain. I try to remember St. Paul’s teaching in my every day role as a teacher, wife, and mother: to love and to be motivated by love. Love forms people.

Women have a big role to play in the formation of God’s children. Whether we are biological mothers or spiritual mothers, God has called us to love and nurture His children. Leadership within the Church is not limited to the ministerial priesthood, women, as lay people, are called to be leaders in all sectors, guiding and preparing people to accept the call to holiness. Although Jesus is prophet, priest, and king, he was a teacher. We are called to participate in his role as teacher. Many women are contributing in this capacity throughout the world.

#CatholicsOfToronto Part 2/4 of Dr. Josie Lombardi's Story

Photo: Anna Dzieciol Photography

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