The Giving Voice core team held its annual in-person February 15-17 meeting just outside of Seattle, Washington. They provided a beautiful setting for the work of evaluation, long-term planning, and direction setting. One big agenda item this year was strategizing next steps for implementing initiatives with the remaining Hilton grant funds. Leadership development, diversity & inclusion work, communication, and sustainability are top priorities.
A packed audience of Catholic Sisters and their supporters enjoyed an energizing evening with singer/songwriter Sara Thomsen during this year’s National Catholic Sister’s Week. The concert and open-mic night, "In Praise of Sisters," was the third annual collaborative event between Giving Voice and other Catholic Theological Union-based organizations, Religious Formation Conference, Communicators for Women Religious, National Religious Vocation Conference and The Center for the Study of Religious Life at CTU.
The National Religious Vocation Conference (NRVC) is conducting a follow-up survey to the 2009 Study on Recent Vocations to Religious Life. The first part of the survey was sent to all major superiors, prioresses and provincials in February. The second part of the survey will be sent in early spring to members who entered religious life from 2003 to 2018.
The theme for our 2019 gathering is Boldness and Beauty of Communion: Living Religious Life NOW. As Catholic women religious, we aim to celebrate our shared life and the beauty of diversity. Influenced by different charisms and united in the same Spirit, we are aim to open our eyes and hearts wider to the beauty of God’s activity within and around us. We seek to deepen our contemplation of how to live Eucharistic lives, celebrate the holiness of creativity and the beauty of the arts. Centered around this theme, our gathering will include prayer and input related to the Eucharist, arts, and intercultural community life.
Congratulations to the new awardees of Giving Voice’s Leadership Scholarship, Sisters Margaret Muchire, Sarah Cieplinski, Blanca Rosa Caledron Gonazalez, Karina Conrad, Sr Nathalie Becquart xmcj, Jana Polakova, Sister Rosalia Meza, VDMF & Sr. Olga Sanchez, CMS! Read about Sister Margaret's journey below & Click through our Scholarship Awardee page to learn more about the new winners of our scholarship program to advance leadership, language and bridge-building among younger Catholic Sisters.
We had a fabulous evening with singer/songwriter Sara Thomsen, celebrating Catholic Sisters during our concert & open-mic event In Praise of Sisters, for National Catholic Sisters Week 2019! Giving Voice Core Team member Xiomara Mendez-Hernandez, OP was our MC, and several Giving Voice participants spoke during the open-mic portion of the evening.
Every two years, the Giving Voice community hosts a National Gathering to provide space for Catholic Sisters under age 50 to build bridges across communities in a peer-led setting to deepen relationships with God and each other and to foster growth, leadership skills, and a vision for the future of religious life. During our 4-day gathering we will experience the joyful presence of our shared sisterhood and discern together how we are called to live religious life now, by boldly celebrating the beauty of communion.
I recently attended World Youth Day’s one day event in D.C. with my friend and Sister Kelly. For me going to participate in this day was about bringing a modern presence to what I correctly assumed would be a gathering of traditional Catholics. The moment which stands out to me most from that day was a woman Kelly and I met at the Vocation Coffee House.