Ever since I made the decision to convert to Catholicism, I’ve been trying to figure out where my career choice might lead me. As a nurse, I am going to encounter a lot of experiences that may challenge my moral beliefs, such as working with sexually active teens who want or need to discuss birth control options, or a single woman who just found out she is pregnant and is considering terminating the pregnancy. I’ve been trying to figure out how I would handle these types of situations and ways I can avoid them (though total avoidance will be impossible). I’ve been trying to think of places and areas I can work where that may not be a huge issue. I can only think of two options at the moment.
One is to work in pediatrics, most likely in an area where they are chronically ill, or especially young. This is the only area of nursing I can think of in which the above dilemmas will likely never be an issue, or at least rarely. But while I would love and hope to work with kids, I’m going to need to be willing to work in whatever area I can find a job.
So, option number two comes in here. I could work in a Catholic hospital. I know that was a good option, but I don’t know of any such hospitals near me. In fact, I had no idea where to find one anywhere. And then I had the answer dropped in my lap unexpectedly. While in Alabama last week, I was talking with a gentleman at the church that was hosting our group. He was telling me all about the Mobile area. He knew I was a nursing student and told me about the hospitals in the area. Turns out, one of the five in Mobile is Catholic! This surprised me a little, as I had only seen one Catholic church in the area among 20+ churches of other denominations. I was elated. I had already fallen in love with the area and had always dreamed of moving south one day (I hate cold Minnesota weather). This seemed like it could be the perfect fit.
So, when I got home, I looked up the hospital, and let’s just say that I like what I saw. I could definitely see myself working there. I know that I still have a long way to go, and God may lead me in another direction, but this is where I want to work one day. I am so excited to have finally found the kind of place where I think I would be comfortable working. And even if this doesn’t work out, at least I know hospitals that are Catholic at their core exist, even in unexpected places like the very Protestant southern states.