Tag Archives: Get to Know Religious
Here is another installment in our Get to Know series comes from the Poor Clares of Cincinnati. They are a contemplative order of the Franciscan tradition. Below is a “fact sheet” of sorts provided by Sr. Mary Pia Malaborbor, Vocation Director of the order.
Poor Clares of Cincinnati
We are a community of sisters known as the Poor Clares, the contemplative branch of the Franciscan family, founded by St. Clare of Assisi in the 13 century. As Poor Clares, we take the vows of poverty, chastity, obedience and enclosure. Our mission is to pray for the needs of the church, the world, and all people.
In 2009 we celebrated the 800th anniversary of the beginning of the Franciscan movement and the 150th anniversary of the Tyrolese friar missionaries becoming the Custody of St. John the Baptist in Cincinnati, Ohio. In 2012, we celebrated 800 years of Poor Clares, and the 22th anniversary of the day the first Poor Clare took up residence in Cincinnati, at the invitation of the Minister Provincial of St. John the Baptist Province, for the purpose of forming a Poor Clare foundation and bringing the contemplative Franciscan tradition to the area.
1212 On Palm Sunday, March18, 1212, the young noble woman, Clare di Offreduccio, became the first of St. Francis of Assisi’s “Poor Ladies” at Our Lady of Angels, the Portiuncula. Thousands of pilgrims continue to visit the Portiuncula each year, where the Franciscan movement began.
1253 On August 9, 1253, Clare became the first woman to have the Rule she wrote receive Papal approval. Clare died two days later. Clare had spent 40 years with her sisters at San Damiano living the life of the gospel. Many women wanted to follow Clare’s example. During that 40 year period, 147 monasteries had been founded throughout Europe.
1255 Two years after her death, on August 15, 1255, Clare was canonized by Pope Alexander IV.
1875 Mother Mary Magdelene Bentivoglio was sent by Pope Pius IX to the United States to found a Poor Clare monastery. Although attempts were made in these early years, Cincinnati would not see a Poor Clare foundation for many years.
1956 The Poor Clares in Evansville, Indiana requested Archbishop Alter of Cincinnati to permit the sisters to establish a Poor Clare monastery, but Cincinnati would have to wait another 34 years for a Poor Clare foundation.
1990 On June 24, 1990, Sr. Doris Gerke, Huehuetenango, Guatemala, Sr. Anna Marie Covely, Langhorne, PA, and Sr. Dianne Short, Bronx, NY, moved into St. Vivian’s Parish Convent in Cincinnati. The Duncan, B.C. monastery became the sponsoring monastery for this Poor Clare foundation.
1991 On January 2, 1991, Rome approves the establishment of the foundation in Cincinnati.
1996 On September 1, 1996, after many prayers, and the generous donations from many benefactors, the sisters celebrated the groundbreaking ceremony and blessing by Archbishop Pilarczyk for the new monastery building project.
Visitors are Welcome (Please contact us for more information)
Meeting Room– Our Meeting Room provides space for up to 35 people to meet for workshops, day long group retreats, meetings or special occasions.
Guest Area– Our Guest Area provides a wonderful prayerful atmosphere for those who want to schedule a private retreat.
Chapel – We welcome anyone who wants to come and share in prayer with us for Mass, Morning, Noon and Evening prayer.
As followers of Clare and Francis, this is what we ardently seek and long for: To live as a loving community the Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ in poverty, littleness, simplicity, and joy; open and sensitive to the Spirit working within us, among us, and beyond us; lovingly surrendering ourselves to the Lord; witnessing to the primacy of contemplative prayer and trusting in the care of the Lord each day of our lives.
- Spiritual Direction/Spiritual Companioning
- Directed Retreats
- Classes on Prayer and Franciscan/Clarian Spirituality
- Clerical Work
- Sewing Habits for OFM Friars
- Selling Individually Designed Cards and Craft Items
- Providing Meeting Room Space for Groups to Meet
- Providing Space for Retreatants in our Guest Area
For more information, please contact:
Monastery of St. Clare :::: Telephone: (513) 825 -7177
1505 Miles Road :::: E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cincinnati, OH 45231 :::: Website:www.poorclarescincinnati.org
To view the rest of the Get to Know Series, click here.
This month’s installment of the Get to Know series comes from Sr. Mary St. Kisai Corripio, SNDdeN of the US Vocation Team for the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. The sisters have been active in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati since 1840 and run a Catholic high school and elementary school in Cincinnati. For more information about the sisters visit their website at http://www.sndden.org or www.ASKanSND.org.
Sacred friendship is at the heart of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. The foundational friendship is that between God and our foundress St. Julie Billiart. This friendship was born when Julie was very small, persevered and deepened through trial, illness and persecution. It is the friendship through which God planted the charism which the congregation still carries today: the intimate awareness of God’s goodness and the desire to embody that goodness for the world.
The Congregation was founded during the turbulent years following the French Revolution. In preparation for its founding God forged a friendship between two very different women, Julie Billiart, a poor simple woman from a village north of Paris, and Viscountess Françoise Blin de Bourdon. Francoise, as a member of the aristocracy had narrowly escaped being guillotined. Julie poor, yet well loved for her deep faith and courage had been rented a room by a friend and benefactress in the Blin residence in Amiens. The two met when Francoise paid a visit to her invalid tenant, and they discovered in each other a common love for God that drew them together into what has been called, “the greatest recorded friendship between women in the history of religious life.”
Together they professed their first vows as Sisters of Notre Dame in 1804 after having known each other for ten years. And seeing the needs of the times, they dedicated themselves to the education of the poor, especially women and girls. Julie had the vision that her daughters would go “to the ends of the earth,” so she exhorted them to have hearts as wide as the world. Indeed, the congregation grew rapidly and spread to multiple dioceses in France and Belgium.
After her death, the first foreign mission was realized, and Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, left Belgium for the New World, settling first in Cincinnati in 1840. Soon after, the Sisters founded missions in Congo, Great Britain, and now have sisters in 17 countries across five continents
In the USA, too, God blessed the congregation with a sacred friendship between the Superior Louise Van der Schrieck and her protégé, Sister Julia McGroarty, who had been the first woman to enter the congregation in the US and also became successor to Louise as Superior of the US Province.
Their collaboration set the firm foundations for the Congregation in the United States, now numbering nearly 900 sisters from coast to coast. The sisters still hold education as our primary call, manifest in a diversity of ministries. We have three universities: Trinity Washington University in Washington, DC, Emmanuel College in Boston, and Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, CA; and several high schools and elementary schools, adult education centers, etc. In Cincinnati, the sisters founded and continue to staff Mt. Notre Dame High School in 1860 and Corryville Catholic in 1877.
More recently, the sisters have opened ministries to serve those lacking material resources. One such ministry is Cincinnati Housing Partners, a program dedicated to increasing home-ownership opportunities for families in the Cincinnati area. The organization builds houses or purchases houses and rehabilitates them with the help of volunteers. The homes are sold to low-to-moderate income families. Homeowners also attend classes that teach the skills required for successful home ownership. Another is the West End Center which provides human services to encourage self-sufficiency and interdependence. Programs include: Power Inspires Progress and the West End Emergency Center/Food Bank.
For more information about these ministries or to volunteer see www.sndohio.org
You can learn more about the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur at www.sndden.org
And to learn about how to become a sister of Notre Dame de Namur, see www.ASKanSND.org or call Sister Angele Lewis at 888/827-1724 (toll free).
Today’s installment of the Get to Know Series has been written by Sr. Mary Lou Schmersal, CPPS, a Sister of the Precious Blood. To learn more about the sisters, please visit their community website at www.preciousbloodsistersdayton.org. Or contact Sister Schmersal at email@example.com.
We Sisters of the Precious Blood are an active apostolic congregation devoted to Eucharistic prayer and motivated by the selfless sacrifice of Jesus. In imitation of the life-giving, reconciling power of the Precious Blood of Christ poured out for us, we go forth to care, comfort, aid, and heal. Fueled by a vibrant faith, our ministries take us beyond traditional convent walls and into real world communities throughout the U.S., Chile, and Guatemala; into the lives of real people in need of real help. We rely on the special gifts and talents of each of our Sisters to champion justice, provide voices to the unheard, and light to those living in darkness.
Our proud history started with Maria Anna Brunner from Switzerland, a widowed mother of six who lived during the nineteenth century. Following an intense religious experience during a pilgrimage to Rome and at the age of 70, Mother Brunner gathered around her several women who were drawn to Precious Blood spirituality, to ministry to the poor and to adoration of the Eucharist. Mother Brunner died in 1836, leaving behind the women who sustained and grew their prayerful, active community, eventually becoming the Sisters of the Precious Blood.
In the United States
Three Sisters of the Precious Blood came to the United States in 1844 at the invitation of Bishop John Baptist Purcell of Cincinnati, Ohio. They were the first of many from both Switzerland and Germany. They accompanied the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, who had been founded in Italy by St. Gaspar del Bufalo and whose pioneering member in the United States was Father Francis deSales Brunner, the son of Mother Brunner.
The first Sisters settled temporarily in Peru, Ohio, eventually moving to New Riegel in nearby Seneca County where on December 22, 1844, they moved into a new convent named in honor of Mary at the Crib. Under the direction of Father Brunner, the Sisters in the early years were part of ten foundations in western Ohio and in nearby Jay County, Indiana.
The Sisters prayed hours of adoration before the Blessed Sacrament, and worked in maintaining both their simple convents and those of the Fathers and Brothers. Wherever the Sisters were they reached out to meet the needs of the children of the area by opening and operating schools and orphanages, especially for German Catholic immigrants.
In 1846, the first Motherhouse of the Sisters of the Precious Blood was established at Maria Stein, Ohio. Maria Stein was named in honor of “Mary of the Rock,” a popular Marian shrine in Switzerland which had often been visited by Mother Brunner. The community increased in membership, established houses for Eucharistic adoration and began to expand its ministries to meet new needs, including religious instruction, domestic work in seminaries and bishops’ residences, ministry among Native Americans, and care for the sick and elderly.
In 1903, the Sisters accepted a challenging mission in Arizona, before it was even a state. Ten years after that they responded to the invitation to establish a school in San Luis Rey in southern California. In 1923, the congregation transferred its motherhouse to Dayton, Ohio. The original motherhouse in Maria Stein, today a valued Ohio Historical Site, continues as a center of prayer, Eucharistic adoration and pilgrimage and houses the internationally known Shrine of the Holy Relics, welcoming guests and hosting various programs.
In 1946 the congregation became a formally recognized pontifical institute, known officially as the Congregation of the Sisters of the Precious Blood. The initials C.PP.S. stand for the Latin “Congregatio Pretiosissimi Sanguinis.”
As the community grew and spread, we eventually served God’s people in states from east to west and north to south: Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., Tennessee, Michigan, Indiana, Missouri, North Dakota, Colorado, Arizona and California as well as many places in Ohio. Our congregation of the Sisters of the Precious Blood of Dayton, Ohio, is now a thriving community that actively lives our faith in the United States, Latin America, and around the world.
In Latin America
On December 28, 1956, five Precious Blood Sisters from the United States set sail on the Santa Margarita for the congregation’s first international mission in Chile since our Sisters had arrived from Europe. This was in response to the invitation of Pope Pius XII who asked religious communities to send members to the church in Latin America where clergy and religious were needed to serve the people.
They arrived in the port of Valparaiso on January 16, 1957, marking the beginning of what would become the congregation’s Chilean Vicariate, eventually comprised of both American and Chilean sisters and where they remain in ministry today.
In the late 1980s, Precious Blood Sisters ventured once again to Latin America and began various ministries in Guatemala. One Sister remains there today running a recognized school for indigenous girls.
In Response to Needs Here and Around the World
Several Sisters of the Precious Blood have also provided temporary service to people who suffered emergencies both here and around the world. In 2005, two Sisters went to India and worked with survivors of the tsunami that devastated so much of the country.
Sisters have participated in international peacekeeping efforts in the Palestinian Territories. After the disaster caused by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, several Sisters went to live and work there, offering people healing and reconciliation in their lives.
These are some of the ways we express our vowed life as contemporary women religious. We make a difference in the world, every single day. Check out our website to learn more about us: www.preciousbloodsistersdayton.org
Urged by the redeeming love of Jesus the Christ and rooted in Eucharistic prayer, we Sisters of the Precious Blood proclaim God’s love by being a life-giving, reconciling presence in our fractured world.
This month’s installment of the Get to Know series comes from Sister Carolyn Brink of the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas. For more information about the Sisters of Mercy or their vocation ministry, please contact Sister Marjorie Rudemiller, RSM 513-662-4657 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit the Sisters of Mercy website: www.sistersofmercy.org. You may also find them on Facebook and Twitter (@sistersofmercy).
Catherine McAuley, of Dublin, Ireland, having a deep compassion for poor people, founded a House of Mercy for women and children in 1827. To ensure the continuity of her ministry, Catherine was advised to form a religious community. She and two companions pronounced vows on December 12, 1831.
On August 18, 1858 eleven Sisters of Mercy came to Cincinnati at the invitation of Archbishop John Baptist Purcell. Within two months after their arrival they opened a Night School for Young Women and a School for Infant Boys. During their time in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati the Sisters of Mercy have taught in numerous schools. They continue to serve in parish elementary schools while sponsoring Mercy Montessori Center in Walnut Hills. They also sponsor Mother of Mercy High School and McAuley High School.
The Sisters of Mercy sponsor eight acute care facilities and eight long term centers in the Archdiocese. They also sponsor two social services centers.
In direct service to poor people, the Sisters of Mercy sponsor Mercy Neighborhood Ministries in Walnut Hills. They also direct Bethany House Services for homeless women and children and have established Mercy Professional Services for emotional healing.
People who wish to dedicate a year or more of service may join in the Mercy mission through Mercy Volunteer Corps. Men and women who seek to deepen their relationship with God in partnership with the Sisters of Mercy join them as Mercy Associates.
Faithful to Catherine’s vision of service through the works of mercy, all Sisters profess a fourth vow of service to the poor, sick and ignorant. From teaching, nursing, and a variety of works of mercy, Sisters make the compassion, love, and mercy of God visible in our world. The Sisters are strengthened in their work through prayer, the sacraments, and the love and support of one another in community.
Click here to read more about the other groups featured in our Get to Know Series.
The year is 1762, the country France. Jean Martin Moye, a young parish priest, was touched by the poverty and spiritual hunger of villagers living in Lorraine’s countryside. He was particularly moved by the lack of educational opportunities for women and young girls as well as the absence of faith formation in the region. Convinced that something must be done to meet these needs, Father Moye educated several young women. On January 14, 1762, he sent them to live among and minister to the people in the small rural hamlets of Alsace Lorraine. This was the beginning of the Congregation of Divine Providence. Father Moye’s belief was that the mission would succeed only if the people welcomed the sisters; if it was God’s will that this little project succeed, God would provide! He gave them the title “Poor Sisters of the Child Jesus” but the people served, recognizing the sisters’ strong reliance on Providence, called them Sisters of Providence, the title which remains ours to this day. In the subsequent years, the number of young women attracted to this group grew steadily. The civil unrest in the region also grew.
In the late 1880’s, Bismarck’s Kulturkamp was making it difficult for religious communities to work in France. Alsace-Lorraine had been annexed to Germany as a result of the Franco-Prussian War. At the same time, the Congregation’s novitiate had grown large. The need to find a new place of ministry for the large number of women preparing to become Sisters of Divine Providence led the superiors to seek a place in the United States to begin a new branch of the Congregation. In 1866, Sisters were sent from the Motherhouse in Saint Jean de-Bassel, France to Texas. But this group, at the insistence of the Bishop of San Antonio, had severed ties with the motherhouse and become a diocesan congregation. It was to Kentucky that the next group would come. Trying to determine where to send the sisters, Mother Anna Houlne opened a Catholic Directory at random. At first glance she saw the name of Bishop Camillus Paul Maes and, believing this to be an answer to prayer, wrote the Bishop a letter requesting him to consider allowing her to send sisters to the Diocese of Covington. The Bishop, who was looking for sisters who could minister to the German speaking immigrants in his diocese, gratefully accepted Mother Anna’s proposal. On August 23, 1889 three sisters arrived in Kentucky. These first women worked in parish schools in the Northern Kentucky area. As their numbers grew, so did their ministries. Since their arrival in the United States, the Sisters of Divine Providence have ministered in the fields of education, health care and pastoral care. They’ve ministered to orphans, seminarians, Native Americans and have been involved in social work, religious education, spiritual direction and retreat ministry, social justice and environmental education. Several sisters also minister in Ecuador. Whatever their ministry, the sisters strive to be the face of Providence to those they serve and to witness the Providence of God.
Since 1898, the sisters have operated Jeanne d’Arc Residence in Manhattan. Young women of limited means from all over the world call Jeanne d’Arc home while pursuing studies or establishing their career her in the U.S.
Moye Spirituality Center, located on the Provincial House grounds in Melbourne Kentucky hosts individuals, groups and organizations seeking to deepen their relationship with God, self, others or God’s world.
St. Anne Wetlands, a beautiful wet forested area dedicated to education and research is owned by the Congregation. This property has been placed into a conservation easement to assure educational and research opportunities well into the future.
If you would like to learn more about what it is like to be a Sister of Divine Providence, you can visit our website: www.cdpkentucky.org or contact Sr. Theresa Falkenstein at: St Anne Convent, 1000 St. Anne Drive, Melbourne, KY 41059, (859)- 441-0700 x23, vocation@cdpKentucky.org.
Click here to read more about the other groups featured in our Get to Know Series.
This month’s (admittedly late) installment of the Get to Know series comes from Sister Joan Miller of the Sisters of St. Francis of Oldenburg (AKA the Oldenburg Franciscans). For more information about the Oldenburg Franciscans or their vocation ministry, please contact Sister Joan Miller, OSF at 812-933-6417 or email@example.com . Visit the Oldenburg Franciscan website at www.oldenburgfranciscans.org or their blog at http://peaceandgood.wordpress.com. You can also find them on Facebook.
Sr. Theresa Hackelmeier, A Franciscan from Vienna, Austria arrived in Oldenburg, Indiana, January 6 1851, after traveling from Austria aboard the New Yorker to New York, and by canal boat and then horse and buggy. She was welcomed by Fr. Francis Rudolph, pastor of Holy Family Parish and by three young women interested in religious life. These four women ministered to the youth in southeastern Indiana through education and care of orphans. A fire in 1857 destroyed virtually everything. In order to rebuild, Mother Theresa solicited alms door-to-door in Cincinnati, OH and in St. Louis, Missouri. At the age of 33, Mother Theresa died, September 27, 1860. By 1884, there were 234 members and they staffed 54 schools.
Our Sisters still minister through education, parish ministry, spiritual direction and care of Earth. We continually reach out to other cultures through our Spirituality Centers for African and African American women at Nia Kuumba, in St. Louis MO and Native American women at Prayer Lodge in Busby, Montana.
The Sisters also maintain a 300-acre farm, called Michaela Farm, named after Sr. Michaela, one of the first three women to greet Sr. Theresa upon her arrival in Oldenburg. Sr. Michaela became the caretaker of the farm. Today the farm’s staff plus volunteers keep the farm in operation and offer environmental education, spiritual renewal opportunities and natural farming practices.
In addition to the farm, the sisters also maintain two corporate ministries: Oldenburg Academy of the Immaculate Conception, founded in 1852, and Marian University, established in 1851. Oldenburg Academy is a co-educational, Catholic college preparatory high school located on the Motherhouse campus. Marian University, originally established by the Sisters to prepare Sisters to teach, is now a Catholic, Franciscan, co-educational, liberal arts university located in Indianapolis, IN. It is also the recent home of the Bishop Simon Brute College Seminary program attended by many of the college seminarians studying for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.
On the Motherhouse campus you will also find the Oldenburg Franciscan Center. It is a retreat and conference center located in Olivia Hall. It was formally opened to the public in June 2003. The Center provides retreats and programs that nurture spirit, mind, and body. Hospitality is offered to groups whose programs are consistent with Gospel values.
Today, the Franciscan Sisters of Oldenburg are guided by the following direction statement which was agreed upon by the sisters to guide them from 2012-2018:
Through contemplation we embrace anew the prophetic message of Jesus, impelling us to hope-filled, compassionate presence and collaborative, transformative action impacting our universe.
Click here to read more about the other groups featured in our Get to Know Series.
This month’s installment of the Get to Know series comes from Sister Mary Ruth Lubbers of the Sisters of Notre Dame. For more information about the Sisters of Notre Dame or their vocation ministry, please contact Sister Mary Ruth Lubbers, SND at 859-392-8118 or firstname.lastname@example.org . Visit the SND website at www.sndky.org and www.snd1.org.
The Sisters of Notre Dame is an international congregation with a history that goes back to 1850 when God called two young women, Hilligonda Wolbring and Elizabeth Kuhling, to respond to the needs of the children in their classes who had no one to care for them. The two brought the children home and gave them a safe place to live. As more children came under their care, it was decided to establish a religious community. With the help of the Sisters of Notre Dame of Amersfoort, The Netherlands, Hilligonda and Elizabeth entered into religious formation. They became known as Sister Mary Aloysia and Sister Mary Ignatia, respectively. The Amersfoort sisters had been formed in the spirit of Julie Billiart and the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.
Times in Germany became difficult under Bismarck and his Culture War. The Sisters needed to leave Germany; they began to migrate to the United States of America in 1874 where there were many German immigrants in Cleveland and Toledo, Ohio and Covington, KY. Bishop Augustus Toebbe of Covington was a brother to one of the Sisters in Germany and requested Sisters for his diocese. The Sisters first came to Mother of God Church and School. In the subsequent years, many Sisters arrived and began to teach in schools in the Northern Kentucky area. In time the community grew in Covington and the Archbishop of Cincinnati invited the Sisters to come and teach in schools and take over St. Aloysius Orphanage, in the spirit of the founding Sisters. Over the years, the Sisters have also ministered in the dioceses of Birmingham, Alabama, Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky to respond to the needs of the People of God in those areas.
Julie Learning Center, also sponsored by the Sisters of Notre Dame, provides an enrichment program for four- and five-year-olds. The Sisters have made a commitment to working with students in the urban areas. They still minister in schools to which the Sisters first came upon arriving in the States in the 1870’s.
Recently the Notre Dame Urban Education Center was started to offer transformative educational programs to individuals and families, providing support. Students are helped on a daily basis after school through instructional tutoring, creative play, Fine Arts enrichment, and physical education. Through the assistance of many volunteers, young people from the urban area are improving in their school performances and their lives.
The sisters also have served the People of God in the health care ministry, sponsoring St. Charles Care Center in Ft. Wright, KY to care for the elderly and St. Claire Regional Medical Center in Morehead, KY to care for the people of Appalachia. These institutions strive to proclaim God’s goodness through the healing ministry of Jesus.
In 1995, the Sisters opened a mission in Buseesa, Uganda, East Africa along with Sisters from the California province to help raise the standards of education and prepare young people for Catholic leadership in the poorest bush region of the Hoima diocese. St. Julie Primary School was opened in 1998 and Notre Dame Academy Secondary School in 2003.
The Sisters have been involved in the Hispanic Ministry Office of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati in Dayton reaching out to individuals and families from Mexico and other Latin countries who need help in learning English and adjusting to life in the United States.
The Sisters have an outreach program during the summer – Stretch Your Heart – during which they cordially invite single women ages 18 -40 to join them for a week of service.
The Sisters strive to be open to the needs of the times and to find faith-filled, caring ways to respond.
Click here to read more about the other groups featured in our Get to Know Series.