Sister Linda Gonzales



Tell us about your growing up years and family.

I was the sixth of seven children. My dad worked for the City of Pasadena. While my mother worked, I took care of my younger sister, and I cooked the dinner meals for those of us at home. My older brother was married and out of the house.

Please share a favorite story about your early community service.

After joining the community, I received permission to continue my career as a hairstylist in the same beauty salon that I had left for my profession! Sister Christina was a tremendous support in this endeavor.

Why did you decide to become a sister?

Before I joined, the sisters in the convent were transitioning from their habits to regular clothing and a colleague was providing new styles for religious women as they shed their veils. She needed help and asked me to help her at the Mt. Alverno convent in Sierra Madre. While giving haircuts, Sister Marianne and other sisters living there befriended me and continued to invite me to their dinner gatherings and events. They were my biggest influencers.

How do you share your Franciscan values and spirituality now?

Currently, I live in Redwood City with sisters Marianne, Ellen, and Deborah where I continue work as a kindergarten aide at Mt. Carmel Elementary School. Before the pandemic, we used to make casseroles and sandwiches monthly for the poor and homeless community. Now we prepare meals for approximately 40 individuals weekly. As a community, we pray together in the evenings before meals and whenever we can mesh our schedules.

What would you like us to know about being a Franciscan?

Our community is committed to helping people who are experiencing poverty in every way we can! We enjoy this work the most!

Please share a favorite quote or verse.

“What you have received as a gift, give as a gift!” This command from Jesus can be found in Matthew 10:8.

Is there anything else you’d like to share?

Getting to know my future Sisters at Mt. Alverno while styling hair was a really fun and interesting time! Though I was intimidated because I had never known any women religious, they made me feel at ease.

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