Visitation in the UK

Full name: Visitation Lesterpearson

Age: 22

Occupation: Graduated 2017 summer and then I spent a marvelous 10 months in the Philippines. I am slowly transitioning into the young adult life which is wholly daunting and exciting, simultaneously.

Location: Surrey, England

Educational background: Biomedical Sciences at Durham University in England , UK

How does your Catholic faith affect the way you live your day-to-day life?

I hope and pray that my faith affects everything and anything  in my day to day life:  I can fit in a quick divine mercy chaplet at 3pm if I  notice the time or wash an extra dish as a little penance or not eating meat on Friday - ( my mother even incenses the house (whilst saying the creed)  every Friday and now I do it occasionally when I am at home -  epitome of a religio-cultural practice, don’t you think?)  

But still an awfully long way to go at many levels and striving!

Tell us about a moment in your life when your Catholic faith transformed your understanding of yourself, your purpose and others.

I have always felt God reveals Himself to me through other people - this is why the mystery of incarnation is so incomprehensible yet  humbles me, frighteningly. So it is through this, I have transformed,  seeing that each one has an inherent dignity and, in fact, possess the face and love of God incarnate in and within them.

This hasn’t always been the case: I have had to slowly wean off the soma of worldly voices; to realise the dignity I possess, to realise this dignity can not be taken away by what I do and what I don’t do, to realise the dignity remains for who I am as a human being created in the image and likeness of God.

Viewing others through such tinted-lens has not only vivified my encounters but has also clarified my purpose clearer: to love and serve others as they are, with no urgency to fix and to wrestle amongst the myriad of nuances in human-relationships.

What lesson did you learn from that moment?

I am continuously learning: that it difficult to love others as they are - when they are  incompetent, arrogant, chaotic, apathetic,  vapid… etc. That it is difficult to love others - when I am incompetent, arrogant, chaotic, apathetic, vapid ...etc.

Give me the Grace, God. 

How do you grow in your Catholic faith?

It is always changing: whilst I was at university it was daily mass and being part of a Catholic community, last year in the Philippines it was regular adoration and serving. Now, it seems quite regular retreats.

I find it fascinating the way we approach God constantly changes as we change yet, He never changes. I also find it amazing that God providentially provides, always, to grow closer to Him, according to our phase and pace.

What do you do for fun?

I love pilgrimages - every summer I try and do one if can. Pilgrimages have taken me from northern Italy  up the mountains in the footsteps of  Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati to hundred of miles across southern England to Canterbury. They become a highlight for the sheer allegory of ‘the Journey’.  On normal days though, fun can be anything from getting wildly excited over a nice sunset or a simple catch up with old friends and family.

Three words that describe you — go!

Yay! For untranslatable german words - even though I don’t know any German.

1)    Schwärmerei (I am often in a state of unbridled enthusiasm or sentiment for things/activities/people -  a double-edged sword)

2)    Fingerspitzengefühl (I have heightened sensitivity and adaptivity towards situations/people;  again , a double-edged sword)

3)    Kopfkino (I often play out/dwell on  various scenarios vividly in my head:  things which have happened or could happen or will never happen  - perhaps it's a woman thing? Or just another double-edged sword trait)

Fill in the blank:

My morning routine currently consists of: waking up at 6am and a quick breakfast.  Catch the commuter train into London. I say Lauds on the train and its especially beautiful when the sun rises and the psalms are poetically portraying God’s creation. I walk about 50 mins through central London including a 15 mins stop  at a stained-glass adorned hidden gem - one of the oldest churches in England. Usually I am the only one- nothing beats the bustle of the city or a hectic day than mere minutes amidst tranquility ,  just being.

I’m currently obsessed with: the dazzling colours of Autumn

I feel most inspired when: when I have an authentic encounter with another person sharing in their vulnerability 

My favorite part about my life right now is: The transition, which is immensely daunting and worryingly exciting.

The advice I would give to the millennial Catholic woman is: Live authentically; In the world but not of the world.

Corynne StaresinicComment