St. Louis

Seeds Far and Near  

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

My upstairs neighbor, a horticulturist at Missouri Botanical Garden, recently returned from a research trip to Kyrgyzstan where his team helped local scientists collect fruit and nut tree seeds for national seed banks including one in Kyrgyzstan.

He said some of the trees are among some of the oldest on the planet. Kyrgyzstan, located on part of the iconic Silk Road, is bordered by China to the east and Uzbekistan to the west, a location I can barely imagine.  How exotic the trip, the research, the land, the terrain,

Farewell, Rudy

By Sister Barbara Jean Franklin, ASC

We learned last week that the talented St. Louis-area sculptor Rudolph “Rudy” Torrini died Wednesday, Sept. 5. He was 95 and died from complications of dementia.

Mr. Torrini, the son of an Italian immigrant mold maker and a silent movie pianist, was renowned for his public sculptures that grace the St. Louis area. His works include the likeness of a soccer player, a police officer, a boy and his dog, Italian immigrants, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Pope John Paul II, and a 9-year-old child who was slain in the crossfire of a gunfight.

Sister Bertha (Mary Austin) Fischer: Congregation Leader, Translator, Singer Dies

Sister Bertha (Mary Austin) Fischer, ASC, died Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018, in St. Louis. She was 83 years old and had been a professed member of the Adorers of the Blood of Christ for 61 years.

Sister Bertha was the fifth of 12 children of Joseph, Sr. and Elizabeth (Tebbe) Fischer from St. Rose, Illinois.

She received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in French, minoring in other languages, that kick-started a lifelong interest and ministry in languages.

She taught French at St. Pius X High School in Festus,

Helping God Answer Prayers of Human Trafficking Victims

By Sister Kate Reid, ASC

The World Day Against Trafficking on Monday has passed, but trafficking knows no calendar, and the need for vigilance continues. These days, I’m thinking a lot about clients I helped climb out of the human hell of trafficking.

This summer, I retired after 15 years of the most gratifying ministry I’ve ever had. I worked for the Immigration Law Program of Legal Services of Eastern Missouri in St. Louis, which provides free legal representation for poor people. I represented hundreds of immigrants who needed help applying for immigration benefits.

Good, Goodness, and Grace

By Sister Regina Siegfried, ASC

Two small and little-known organizations in St. Louis have given me pause to reflect on how good grows from goodness. 

The Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Program, housed in an Episcopal church’s parish hall basement, provides English teachers for immigrant and refugee women as they learn to navigate American culture and the English language.

The women who staff the program are competent, compassionate, caring, and concerned about their students and teachers.  Each teacher is matched with a student and provided with the trademark teacher’s bag full of notebooks,