By guest contributor, Postulant Allison Gliot (pictured above with patron Saint Paul)
When I started discerning with the Daughters of St. Paul, one of the first things I wanted to know was how the Daughters prayed. What were their main devotions? I could guess that St. Paul was probably a big deal, considering the name of the congregation, but I was more concerned with how they talked about Jesus and Mary. Obviously Jesus is always himself regardless of the title we choose to call him by and Mary is Mary no matter what outfit she’s wearing. But it was important for me to understand the Daughters’ main devotions before I went deeper into discernment with them.
Here’s my rundown of what I found about the big Pauline three.
Jesus Master, Way, Truth, and Life
This is the title under which we honor and adore Jesus. By calling him our Master or Teacher, we acknowledge that we are his disciples, his students, and his servants. This title reminds us that we are in a real relationship with Christ.
Our founder, Blessed James Alberione, chose the second part of the title (Way, Truth, and Life) because this is the fullest self-revelation Jesus gives to us in the Gospels at the pinnacle of his life during the Last Supper: “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life” (Jn 14:6). This self-revelation encompasses his whole person in an integral way—will, mind, and heart—and when we approach Jesus under this title, we bring him our whole selves and pray that he will be our way, truth, and life. This approach to Jesus animates our life and all our prayers—from meditation on the Word of God, to the celebration of Mass, to our daily Hour of Adoration, to our morning and evening prayer together, even to the little moments of recollection we take throughout the day.
St. Paul the Apostle
Believe it or not, I was right about St. Paul being a pretty important guy for the Daughters of St. Paul! Our Founder chose Saint Paul as our patron because it is not only important to have a personal relationship with Jesus, but it’s also essential to communicate him to others, as St. Paul said: “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel!” (1 Cor. 9:16). Like St. Paul, we contemplatively listen to the heart of the world with the heart of God. Our spirituality connects us with the apostolic spirit and zeal of St. Paul who allowed himself to be totally transformed into Christ in order to be Christ for others. “For me, life is Christ!” (Phil. 1:21).
Mary, Queen of the Apostles
As the Mother of God and Queen of the Apostles, Mary didn't just treasure her Son—the very Word of God—but she offered her Son to the world. On Pentecost, she was mother to Jesus’ Apostles and with them received the Holy Spirit when he descended with his gifts. Today, Mary is and will always be the way to Jesus, helping every apostle to spread God’s love to the whole world. We pattern our life on hers, both treasuring the Word in our hearts (contemplation) and in sharing Jesus with all the world (our mission), seeking to give Christ to the world as she did. As apostles in the world today, we approach her confidently as our loving Mother, Teacher, and Queen.
Those are our principle devotions, though there are others that enliven our prayer and life: the Sacred Heart of Jesus, St. Joseph, our Guardian Angels, the souls in purgatory, and any saint you can possibly think of that had anything to do with St. Paul. (What can I say? We really do love Paul.) These devotions, always within a dynamic relationship with the Most Holy Trinity, as well as an intense love for Jesus in the Eucharist and Scripture, form the fabric of our Pauline prayer and life.
Postulant Allison entered the convent of the Daughters of Saint Paul in 2017.