This month in “Making Vows” meet Giving Voice participants Sister Nicole Varerin, a Sister of Notre Dame who professed first vows this past February; Sister Mary Therese Perez, OP, a Dominican Sister of Mission San Jose who made her final vows this August; and Sister Reyna Badillo, a Sister of St Francis who made first vows this past June.
In honor of a season full of younger sisters making vows, Giving Voice reached out to interview participants who have recently, or will soon be making this sacred journey. Click through to read interviews with Sister Michelle Garlinski, snjm, Sister Romina Sapinoso, and Sister Christina Chávez, CDP!
Being in mass I could not help starting to reflect again. The church that I attended this Sunday is usually full of children. Whenever I go there I am usually distracted looking at how they behave, some of them sing, some fight, some laugh, they smile. I rejoice at this sign of hope. It was not like that today. Today, I felt sad for them. I also felt curious about their parents and some admiration. How is it possible that an institution that does not protect its children is full of them?
This past July I was blessed with the opportunity to travel to Oaxaca, Mexico, to the Instituto Cultural Spanish Language/Immersion School after receiving a scholarship from Giving Voice. After entering the Sisters of Providence in 2012, I was encouraged by my Sisters who spoke Spanish to pursue my education of the Spanish language. I recall Sister Florence Norton saying, “Joni, the language is in you. You just have to let it bloom.”
To quote a song from Stephen Sondheim’s musical, “Into the Woods,” “no one is alone,” and how true have I found that line since I entered religious life.
The Grounding Circle Group from the 2017 National Gathering had a great time piloting a way to keep in touch and stay grounded. We would like to start a couple more groups in October.
Mary, mother of Jesus, is a woman who, over the years, has taken on many names and faces that cross cultures and boundaries. So many people see something significant in Mary that speaks to their life. She is often a sign of hope and solidarity in suffering. In the past year, I have been introduced to Our Lady, Who Brings Down Walls and Mary, Undoer of Knots.
This August, Giving Voice joyfully welcomes Sister Xiomara Méndez- Hernández, OP, BCC to join the Core Team. Sister Xiomara (See-o-mara), is an Adrian Dominican Sister living in Chicagoland, originally from the Dominican Republic. She ministers as a Hospital Chaplain at Loyola University Health System with special focus on cancer patients.
Last week, Giving Voice representatives once again exhibited at the Leadership Conference for Women Religious alongside partner organizations Religious Formation Conference, National Religious Vocation Conference, Communicators for Women Religious, Center for the Study of Consecrated Life at CTU, A Nun's Life & National Catholic Sisters Project!
Twenty-four hours in a day, seven days in a week gives us 168 hours. Subtract 56 for sleeping (yes, we’re allotting the optimal eight hours a day) leaves 112. Minus 40 hours for full-time ministry and we’re down to 72. Who are we kidding? Most of us are probably working more than 40, but since we’re probably not sleeping 8 hours a night, we’ll let it more or less balance out. Meals, showers, a little time with community, prayer and we’re down to 40 hours left in the week to play with. Forty hours?! That would be great. I did some math wrong somewhere because that is definitely not m