|Vision Vocation Guide and VocationNetwork.org are resources of the Natiional Religious Vocation Conference, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit.|
Seeing the Spirit at work in the world
|Vision Vocation Guide and VocationNetwork.org are resources of the Natiional Religious Vocation Conference, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit.|
Sisterhood, a special, seven-part series produced by Canadian Salt + Light TV in collaboration with Loyola University New Orleans, gives viewers an exclusive look into the daily lives of sisters from around the world. As Salt and Light decribes the focus of the series: "Day in and day out, in every country, religious sisters provide an enormous service to the Church, giving life to the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. Without their prayer, their wisdom or their charity, the Church could scarcely begin to achieve its mission. Yet, the number of sisters in North America and in other countries is dwindling, and at a time when the world desperately needs their charisms."
The series, which already aired in Canada, is available for streaming at Salt + Light.
Pope Francis said that a life which isn't shared with others "belongs in the museum," according to Inés San Martín reporting for Crux. In a Google hangout with youth from around the world, the Pope urged young people not to succumb to an "elitist education" but to be agents of a "human globalization."
“To educate is not to know things," said Francis, but to be "capable of using the three languages, that of the hands, the heart and the mind. Education is to include.”
“If you feel that call, answer it!” Sister Imelda Cardona of the Carmelites of the Holy Trinity says in a general message to young Catholics. “God loves you, so you should answer.”
Sister Cardona is one of six Allied Discalced Carmelites, who have come to the U.S. from Mexico to open a convent in Denver and care for the archdiocese's Holy Trinity Center.
The community, whose charism is to know and to make known the glory of the Holy Trinity, has arrived to Denver to care for the archdiocese’s Holy Trinity Center.
Founded by Sister Martha Maria Ramirez-Mora on July 16, 1986, the order has 200-plus nuns serving in various apostolates – ranging from assisting at nursing homes to retreat centers – in Mexico, Italy, Rome, Argentina and Chile.
“It is by the grace of God,” Mother Martha Patricia Malacara, superior of the community, told the Denver Catholic that the sisters have made their way to the U.S.
Although they will be helping out in the archbishop's residency and caring for the sacristies on the John Paul II center campus, prayer is the primary ministry of this semi-cloistered, comtemplative community: “We want to let people know that we are praying for them.” Mother Malacara says. “Prayer is our main charism.”
Prayer requests may be emailed to Carmelites@archden.org or mailed to Allied Discalced Carmelites of the Holy Trinity, 1300 S. Steele St., Denver, CO 80210. Be sure to tell them VISION Vocation Network sent you!
"James A. Flavin wore old clothes, drove a beat-up old car, and lived alone in a small home he had inherited from his parents in a poor inner-city neighborhood," writes Chicago Sun-Times columnist Mark Brown. "When he died a year ago at age 71 with no obvious family in the picture, his fellow parishioners at St. Adrian’s Catholic Church in Marquette Park came together to give him a proper funeral and burial."
What nobody knew was that Flavin, an alumnus of St. Ignatius, a Jesuit high school in Chicago, was a wealthy man. A safe deposit box discovered after his death revealed stocks and investments valued above $3.4 million. And more surprising, a will prepared in 2008 indicated that Flavin wanted the bulk of his estate to go to the Sisters of Mercy, who had educated his mother.
The authenticity of the will needs to be verified, but as his only living relatives aren't disputing the terms set in the 2008 document, it looks as though the Sisters of Mercy are in for some money. How nice!
Sister Mary Killeen, R.S.M., an Irish Sister of Mercy, who has been working in the slums of Kenya for the past 30 years, was chosen to address Pope Francis during his visit there this past week. Sister Mary told the Pontiff of the adversity the people of the slums face to achieve an education and self-sufficiency, not the least of which is rampant corruption and landgrabbing. Sister Mary thanked Francis for visiting their poor community, "Your visit gives us courage. By coming here, you shine a light on the challenges. Your meeting with us gives us dignity."
Follow Sister Mary's blog of her life in Kenya. Or better yet, join her in her work among the poor!
Update: Pope stopped on his way to celebrate his final Mass in Philadelphia to view the "Knotted Grotto" art installation, sponsored by MercyandJustice.org.
Sister Mary Scullion, R.S.M., a Mercy sister, was asked by Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia to help with preparations for the World Meeting of Families, convening from Sept. 22-25, 2015. “The archbishop wanted to talk about how we could protect the poor and hungry,” says Scullion, in an interview with Huffington Post. “But I never imagined we could get so much done in that short time.”
"Since launching the World Meeting of Families Committee on Hunger and Homelessness, reports Jaleem Kaleem, "Scullion has used the pope’s high-profile visit and the convergence this week of the nation’s leading Catholic figures to raise $1.3 million to aid 52 projects and organizations centered on helping people struggling with poverty, mental illness or both."
“Pope Francis says the greatest virtue is mercy,” says Scullion. “But he also said that concrete works of mercy and spiritual development are not enough. We also need systemic change.” Learn more about the works Scullion helped spearhead at MercyAndJustice.org.
Click her for more informations on the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas.
When Sister Mary Anne Francalanza considered religious life, writes Janet Tansley in an aricle for the Liverpool Echo, she did what most of us do when we’re looking for a book or new outfit: She went on the internet.
Sister Mary Anne took her final vows with the Sisters, Faithful Companions of Jesus (FCJ) in Wavertree, Liverpool (U.K.) three years ago.
“I was the first person to have contacted the sisters through the internet," she says. But things are different now. “Today if people want to look for us we are on Facebook, Twitter, [VISION!], the lot..."
“It’s about finding God in all things and all places!”
Click here to learn more about the Faithful Companions of Jesus.
Sacred Heart Sister Philomene Tiernan, R.S.C.J., on a return flight to Sydney, Australia after a trip to Europe, was aboard Malaysian Flight MH17 that was shot down over Ukrainian airspace July 17, 2014.
According to a statement from the school where Tiernan worked, the 77-year-old sister had been making an annual retreat that included a trip to Europe and a visit to St. Francis Xavier Church in Paris, where the founder of the Society of the Sacred Heart, Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat, is buried.
"She was a leading light and will be an incredible loss to the Society of the Sacred Heart, and a huge loss to our school community." said Ms. Johnston-Croke, principal Kincoppal-Rose Bay School of the Sacred Heart, where Tiernan served as a teacher and administrator for more than 30 years.
The Society of the Sacred Heart has schools in 44 countries and all have conveyed their tributes and condolences to the school, Johnston-Croke told The Australian."I've been getting email and texts from all over the world," she said.
Below is a short video made earlier in which Sr.Tiernan and past students talk about the Sisters of the Society of the Sacred Heart and Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat, its foundress.
In a press conference on Friday, the Vatican prefect for consecrated life, Cardinal João Braz de Aviz, outlined the three objectives for the Year of Consecrated Life, which will commence in the fall of 2014 and conclude in November of 2015:
The Year of Consecrated Life is expected to begin in October of 2014, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of Lumen gentium, the Second Vatican Council’s constitution on the Church, which has a specific chapter dealing with consecrated life. The anniversary of the publication of Perfectae caritatis, the Council’s decree on the renewal of consecrated life, will be the occasion of the close of the Year in November 2015.
Learn more here. Be sure to look to the VISION Vocation Network for resources and information on consecrated throughout the year.
In being a member of a religious order and the first Jesuit elected pope, Pope Francis joins 33 other pontiffs who came from religious communities: Here is the list, thanks to a Wikipedia entry on popes:
Learn more about these communities in VISION's Community Search.
|Mother Mary Joseph in her office at the Sisters’ Motherhouse, Maryknoll, NY, 1941|
The founder of the Maryknoll Sisters, Mother Mary Joseph Rogers, MM, has been named one of nine American women to be inducted in 2013 into the National Women’s Hall of Fame (NWHF).
Mother Mary Joseph, whose “extraordinary achievements were recognized and applauded” by all the judges, according to NWHF deputy director Amanda Bishop, will join the 247 eminent women who have been inducted into the Hall since its founding in 1969. Among others included in this year’s list were Betty Ford and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi.
“We are thrilled and honored by Mother Mary Joseph’s selection,” said Sister Janice McLaughlin, MM, president of Maryknoll Sisters, and happy for the recognition it gives to our founder who achieved so much, not only for women religious, but for all American women, at a time when possibilities for them were far more limited than they are today.
“Mary Josephine Rogers, as she was called prior to joining religious life, broke through the negative stereotypes about the role of American Catholic women in church and society at the beginning of the 20th century,” Sister Janice said. “As founder of the first American mission congregation of Catholic women, she proved that women were equal to the demands of life and ministry abroad, particularly in places where poverty, physical hardship and sometimes, even safety during wartime, were commonplace.”
Mother Mary Joseph drew from a lifetime of spiritual depth when she stressed the need for the sisters to be compassionate women, adaptable and willing to try new ways without fear of failure or censure, according to a release put out by Maryknoll. Above all, she emphasized the primacy of a holy life.
Today, Maryknoll Sisters serve in 26 nations around the world, ministering to all people in need. Their numbers include doctors and nurses; authors, artists and dancers; social workers, ecologists and peace activists; theologians and spokespersons to the United Nations.Learn more about the Maryknoll Sisters here.
"When Jesus came to Nazareth, he 'went according to his custom into the synagogue on the sabbath day' and read from a scroll of the prophet Isaiah," writes Dan Grippo in the "Preaching the News" column for Prepare the Word. "But if Jesus were to speak in a synagogue, church, or mosque in the U.S. today, how many young people would be there to hear him?" asks Grippo. "Dramatically fewer than in previous generations, according to Pew Research Center."
According to results of the Pew study, “Nones” on the Rise, one-third of Americans under 30 say they have no religious affiliation, a dramatic increase over numbers from just a few decades ago. Many researchers believe the trend is tied to religion's association with socially conservative politics.
"I think the single most important reason for the rise of the unknowns is that combination of the younger people moving to the left on social issues and the most visible religious leaders moving to the right on that same issue,” says Harvard professor Robert Putman, in an NPR interview by Heidi Glenn.
For Father Mike Surufka, a Franciscan priest in Chicago, there are indeed issues that are fundamental to the church but what seems to really matter is more basic: that the parishioner's spiritual needs are being met. . . . Surufka says he is hopeful about the future of religions in America. "There was a theologian from the mid-1900s who . . . described hope as an attitude toward the future that we cannot see, but we trust that somehow it's held by God and that there are possibilities beyond what we can even imagine."
And Putman points out that, "Even with these recent changes, the American religious commitments are incredibly stronger than in most other advanced countries in the world . . . we are a very religious country even today."
What do you think the church can do to encourage a younger generation to encounter Jesus and tap into the spiritual riches of Catholic teachings and traditions?
For her services creating the state-of-the-art St. George’s Park Retirement Village in Sussex, U.K., Augustinian Sister Mary Thomas was awarded an MBE (Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) by Queen Elizabeth in her New Year’s Honor’s List, Zenit reports. Sister Thomas, a native of Ireland, accepted the award on behalf of her religious community, the Augustinian Sisters of the Mercy of Jesus, and those who provide care in the Augustinian homes: “I recognize that the award is given not just to myself but in recognition, too, of my own religious community and many other professionals who have worked with us over these years to assist the elderly and most vulnerable in our society.”
The Augustinian Sisters of the Mercy of Jesus order was founded by Canon Peter John Maes in 1842. The sisters were to offer assistance to him in his ministry to the mentally ill. Today the sisters run four care facilities throughout the U.K. Their most ambitious project was the St. George’s Park Retirement Village. The award-winning development includes senior apartments, community building, restaurant, bar, shop, hairdresser, library, gym, game rooms, treatment facility, and lush grounds with a lake and park.
Sr Mary Thomas trained as a general and psychiatric nurse and has spent all of her religious life caring for the sick and elderly. When she was appointed Superior of the Order in the 1990s, she began to realize the sisters’ dream of an innovative new assisted living and care community.
For more on the Augustinian Sisters, read their online listing in the VISION community directory.