Amid times of sadness as colleagues died and ministries were reconfigured or surrendered, women religious have not been overwhelmed. Instead they have brought skill, resilience and profound faith to the task of planning for their individual and corporate futures.
Leaders of women religious — including St. Joseph Sr. Carol Zinn and Social Service Sr. Simone Campbell — were among the hundreds of Catholics who gathered on Capitol Hill July 18 to express their disgust at the treatment of immigrant children.
In case you missed it...
GSR will use the grants — $3 million from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and $225,000 from the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation — to continue its work as a top news source about women religious, providing comprehensive news and analysis.
From New York City to the U.S.-Mexico border, thousands of pro-immigrant demonstrators in hundreds of cities gathered July 12 to protest Trump administration's immigration policies.
Sr. Marcia Hall of the Oblate Sisters of Providence talks about why a film highlighting the experiences of young black religious is necessary and the surprising things she's learned as first-time film producer.
After five years serving 10 U.S. dioceses with burgeoning Latino populations, 36 sisters have graduated from the U.S.-Latin American Sisters Exchange Program. They're returning home with Boston College degrees, English skills, and pastoral experience. And for those U.S. dioceses, the sisters leave behind ministries they have built and local leaders they have trained to keep those ministries sustainable.
The lack of women members of the religious congregation had drawn special scrutiny in recent years, as Vatican statistics estimate that there are about four times as many women in Catholic religious orders compared to men. Francis' appointments for the religious congregation, which is formally named the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, were announced July 8.
Being assigned to a hill tribe in Mae Jam, Chiang Mai, a northern area of Thailand, changed the life of Sr. Marie Agnes Buasap, a Sister of St. Paul de Chartres. Her congregation has been in Thailand for 120 years and has 22 schools for students from kindergarten to high school.
Servants of the Blessed Sacrament sisters founded the Eucharistic Adoration Association in 2005 at their motherhouse based in Bien Hoa City. What began with nine people now has 8,000 members throughout Vietnam. Sr. Maria Nguyen Thi Tuyet Lan said the association aims to help promote devotion to the Eucharist, the "great mystery of faith," to live by it and to bear witness to it.
Sr. Teena Menomparampil has rescued hundreds of young village girls from the cultural realities of early marriage, female genital mutilation, child trafficking and child labor that plague so many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. After offering them care and education, she finds many of the girls gravitate toward sisterhood.
Mercy Sr. Mary Maurita Sengelaub, a nurse who entered religious life and eventually led what is now called the Catholic Health Association of the United States, died July 6 at age 101.
GSR Today - Amid a stalemate in the civil war, many South Sudanese "want to be hopeful, but underlying issues are not being addressed," says Sr. Joan Mumaw. "They are afraid to put too much stock on current leaders."
Pope Francis named six superiors of women's religious orders and a consecrated laywoman to be full members of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life. Previously, the members had all been men.
At a recent workshop on trends in child care, I was particularly interested in a collaborative of the Association of Religious in Uganda in response to their government's 2016 ruling that homes for children need a social worker on staff, to have established child-protection policies, and to meet certain child-care standards.