Stories

The Pilgrimage Begins

Fearday (1)By Sister Anita (Anitawa) Fearday, ASC

Twenty kilometers a day. 70 years old. Traveling the Way of St. James in Spain. Next week I begin my pilgrimage.

The Way of St. James was one of the most important Christian pilgrimages during the Middle Ages, together with those to Rome and Jerusalem.

Legend holds that St. James’s remains were carried by boat from Jerusalem to northern Spain, where he was buried in what is now the city of Santiago de Compostela.

My Brother, the Cardinal

To the world, he’s Blase Cardinal Cupich, the ninth archbishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago, appointed two years ago by Pope Francis.

But to Kathy Schulte and her seven other siblings, he’s just Blase, the “ornery” brother who teased his five sisters, shared a room with three brothers and delivered newspapers after school.

Kathy, administrative assistant and IT contact at the Wichita Center, traveled to Rome last month with 62 other relatives and friends to mark her brother’s elevation to cardinal.

cupich“People ask us all the time, ‘how does it feel to have a cardinal in the family?’” she said.

Remembering a ‘Soul-Mate Aunt’

Shirley Kolmer 261
Sister Shirley Kolmer, ASC

Diane Shirley Kolmer so loved and admired her “soul-mate aunt,” Sister Shirley Kolmer, that she adopted the legal middle name, “Shirley,” when her aunt and four other missionary sisters were killed in Liberia in October 1992.

Now 62, the retired Des Moines, Iowa, lobbyist had grown up admiring and emulating Sister Shirley, whom she described as a “born leader,” a “force of nature” who was “ridiculously smart” and “so damn funny.”

“She was my soul-mate aunt,” she said. “She was who I wanted to be when I grew up.

Our Missionary Sister Martyrs Remembered

martyrs-sculpture_ruma
Memorial of the Martyrs of Charity outside the Adorers’ Ruma Center in Ruma, Illinois

Today begins 12 days of remembering our missionary Sisters who died this month, 24 years ago in Liberia, during that African nation’s brutal civil war.

Adorers had been in Liberia since 1970 educating girls, working in health care and doing other ministries. They had come at the invitation of the SMA Fathers, Society of African Missions, based in Tenafly, N.J., who begged the Sisters to come. Many did.

But in the 1980s, as the war heated up,

War, Women and Girls: A Special Kind of Violence

By Sr. JoAnn Mark, ASC

A little more than a year ago, I moved from my university job at Newman University in Wichita, Kan., to run an NGO (non-governmental organization) in New York. In my work for Partnership for Global Justice, I frequently attend meetings at the United Nations.

You get numb to them after a while. But one particular meeting in March left me feeling overwhelmed. The topic was the inhumane treatment of women and girls, including rape and sexual violence in war.

I came to understand that sexual violence, unlike torture,

Life is Full but the Worry is Always There

By Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC

I am Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC and I have pancreatic cancer. In fact, I have lived with cancer since 2012. I hope to share in my blog my journey and my reflections on the presence of God in my life. It is my hope that those who read my entries will find strength for their own journeys.

A lot of life has been coming at me recently, leaving little time for cancer. For that, I am glad. Cancer the physical disease also can creep into the mind.

Sex Offenders in the Neighborhood

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

My neighbors and I recently learned that three sex offenders live among us on our block, a quiet, well-maintained urban neighborhood in St. Louis.

Of course, it came as a surprise, but it shouldn’t have. Sex offenders, drug dealers, and similar folks may be closer than we imagine. By law, sex offenders must register their address with local authorities, who share it for safety reasons with the public.

We met to discuss this troubling discovery, armed with information from various websites including their names and the nature of their crimes as well as the names of the property owner and landlord who house them.

Mysteries in Cancer and in the Garden

By Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC

I am Sister Janis Yaekel, ASC and I have pancreatic cancer. In fact, I have lived with cancer since 2012. I hope to share in my blog my journey and my reflections on the presence of God in my life. It is my hope that those who read my entries will find strength for their own journeys. 

I’ve learned on this journey with cancer to expect surprises, and received a big one on Easter Monday.

When I went to my appointment that day, I learned I would not be undergoing chemotherapy,

What I miss most about Korea

By Sister Bernadine Wessel, ASC 

The people. The relationships formed by living, working, struggling, crying, laughing and praying together… that’s what I miss most about Korea.

I spent time with so many different kinds of people during my 36 years ministering in Korea, and they each taught me lessons that broadened my worldview and formed me into the person I am today.

I spent the longest period of time in Korea ministering at Blessed Mother daycare/kindergarten.   My years of teaching previously in the States had been mostly in the middle grades. In Korea,

Why I Want to Find Out if I Should Be a Sister

10366290_10153831768887162_6912289560158061522_nBy Kristin Forgotch, candidate for the Adorers of the Blood of Christ

Have you ever wondered why some young women today consider becoming a Catholic sister when they have many possibilities for their life’s work?

I’m one of those young women. Honestly, at the beginning, I was not quite sure either, and it scared me to even think about it.

When the idea of maybe becoming a sister first crossed my mind right before Lent 2014, I thought I would just attend an extra weekend Mass and the idea would go away,