St. John of the Cross once said, “Put love where there is no love, and you will find love.”
On Christopher Closeup, Sister Rosemary Dowd, RSCJ, cited that statement when explaining the motivation behind her 40 years of work with prisoners. She explained, “I had no knowledge [of jails] except what you see in the movies. I simply always thought that people in jail were not loved very much by anybody.”
Over the years, Sister Rosemary has had numerous transcendent experiences. Once when she brought a glass of water to a prisoner who was in severe pain, and another time when she tied the shoe of a prisoner whose arm was broken, she felt like she was serving Christ Himself.
Currently the chaplain of Cook County Jail in Chicago, she often prays with the prisoners, listens to their problems, and provides them with reading material from The Christophers that will nurture their faith. She says, “A lot of men I know here want to change, and I love that the Christopher material is so helpful in providing models of people who have changed.”
Putting love where there is no love can make a world of difference.
I have come to call sinners. (Mark 2:17)
Enable us, Jesus, to choose love.