Notes from the Field - This date is ingrained in the fabric of Haitian culture. May 18 is a national holiday, and those who feel they belong to the nation of Haiti, whether or not they live within the borders of the country, will celebrate their national roots in the world's first black republic.
University of Notre Dame graduates were asked May 21 to take stock of where they are going and what they will do with their talents. "Today you have the opportunity to decide what you will be beyond this point. Will you say yes to God's plan in your life?" Sr. Normal Pimentel, recipient of the university's 2018 Laetare Medal, asked the university's graduating seniors.
Sr. Rosa Maria Troches, a School Sister of Notre Dame, joined a delegation to the U.S., where she spoke of her deep worries about the political climate in Honduras, human rights abuses there, and the fate of Hondurans whose temporary protected status in the U.S. has been rescinded.
Consolata Missionary Sr. Leonella Sgorbati was killed by gunmen in 2006 while serving in Mogadishu. Pope Francis has recognized her as a martyr, clearing the way for her beatification — the step before sainthood — which will take place May 26. "Although her martyrdom came suddenly, Sister Leonella put the lives of others first," a fellow sister told GSR.
"Conversations about social, political, economic and racial issues need to be had in communities. So often, we are unaware of just how different our own community members are from us. Don't shy away from these conversations."
Through Operation Restore retreats, Franciscan Sr. Anne Dougherty and her retreat partners provide post-trauma training to firefighters and law enforcement officers. At their Franciscan Center in Tampa, they offer first responders a safe, confidential environment where they can work through critical incidents and process the daily stress of their jobs.
Sr. Mercy Kuriakose, a member of the Missionary Sisters, Servants of the Holy Spirit, practices homeopathy, an alternative medical practice that uses a small amount of an active ingredient to help treat or cure a disease. She has treated approximately 130,000 patients in her 26 years of service as a homeopathy doctor in Mumbai and Bengaluru.
Listening to Sr. Francis Rose Rivers, who once ministered in a Tyson chicken plant, opened my heart to learn from a corporation that tries to provide "accompaniment" in an atmosphere of mutual respect.
Sr. Maureen McGowan, is the province leader of the New York-Toronto Province of the Good Shepherd Sisters. The sisters' first ministry in Manhattan has grown into Good Shepherd Services, which today serves over 30,000 children and families. McGowan spoke with GSR as the community prepares to celebrate its 175th anniversary.
Sr. Alphonse Raj, a member of the Sisters of the Cross of Chavanod, ministers to those living with HIV/AIDS, who are often neglected and ostracized by their families and society after contracting the virus. If infected couples have children who are born with the virus, Raj's New Dawn center adopts the baby. About 50 such children now stay at the center, which provides basic needs and education. In addition, New Dawn's campaigns and programs in the past decade have helped many shed their fears.
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