Sister Maria Barbosa will make her final profession

Sister Maria das Mercês Alves Barbosa will be making her Final Profession of vows on January 13, 2018 in the Chapel of the San Damiano Institute in Aparecida de Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil.  The Archbishop of Goiânia, Dom Washington Cruz, will preside at the celebration.  Sisters Dolores Zemont and Rosemary Fonck will travel from Joliet to take part in the celebration.  To read more about Sister Maria please click on: Sister Maria

 

Relaxing Time at Franciscan Autumn Feast

This year’s 28th Annual Franciscan Autumn Feast proved to a relaxing time where guests were able to get together and enjoy each other’s company while also supporting the Mission and Ministries of the Sisters of St. Francis. Nan Nagl, Mission Advancement Director, was told during the event, “it was like being at a family party.”  The Sisters are very grateful to all who participated to make this event a huge success.

In addition to raising funds for their ministries and retired sisters, the Joliet Franciscan Sisters also took time to recognize two honorees who have made an impact on both the Sisters lives and the Joliet community at large.  St. John the Baptist Parish was honored with the Mother Alfred Moes Award and Joseph and Jodie (posthumously) received the Joliet Franciscan Heritage Award.

In presenting the Mother Alfred Moes Award, Sister Dolores Zemont, President of the Congregation, reminded those present that without the invitation of the pastor of St. John’s to Mother Alfred, the foundress of the Congregation, the Joliet Franciscans would probably not be here today.  “All of the ministries in which we have served for the past 152 years, as well as our beginnings, evolved from that very first invitation from St. John’s Church to teach their children in 1863,” said Sister Dolores.  Today, St. John’s continues to make an impact in the community providing various programs including social justice initiatives and food assistance.

In honoring the Adlers with the Joliet Franciscan Award, Sister Dolores stated, “…Together, they strove for justice for all. Together, they were involved in the Christian Family Movement. They were founding members of the Will County Conference of Religion and Race as well as the Spanish Community Center which still continues contributing to the lives of our brothers and sisters on the east side of Joliet.”  She went on to say, “Even after Jodie’s death in 2014, Joe has continued to be a force for peace and justice in the Joliet area through his tireless contributions of time, talent and treasure, meeting many needs of the Joliet community.  Justice for all burns in his heart and his soul, as it did for Jodie.”

“We are very grateful for the work of the Autumn Feast Committee, our friends, our supporters, our sponsors, our benefactors and friends who all make this event possible,” added Sister Dolores.

For the past several years, the sisters have asked guests to bring a box of pasta, jello or cereal to this event to share with a local food panty.  This year, two vans were filled to capacity with the food that was collected during the event. These were then taken to St. John the Baptist Food Panty.

Remembering Sister Loretta Vetter, OSF

Our Sister Loretta Vetter, OSF, died peacefully at Our Lady of Angels Retirement Home in Joliet, IL on October 9, 2017.

Her wake and funeral Mass took place on Monday, October 16 at OLA and her burial took place on Tuesday, October 17.  She is buried at Resurrection Cemetery in Romeoville, IL.  You can view her wake and funeral Mass by going to our homepage and clicking on the colorful shield which will take you to our livestream page.

You can read about Sister Loretta’s life by clicking on the following link:  Sr. Loretta Vetter.

May she rest in peace.

Remembering Sister Grace Brouch, OSF

Our Sister Grace Brouch, OSF died peacefully at Our Lady of Angels Retirement Home in Joliet, IL on September 22, 2017.

Her wake and funeral Mass took place on Wednesday, September 27 at OLA and her burial took place on Thursday, September 28.  She is buried at Resurrection Cemetery in Romeoville, IL.

You can read more about Sister Grace’s life by clicking on the following link:  Sr. Grace Brouch.

May she rest in peace.

Joliet Franciscan Sisters Announce 2017 Honorees

The Joliet Franciscan Sisters will present the annual Mother Alfred Moes Award and Joliet Franciscan Heritage Award at the 28th Annual Franciscan Autumn Feast on Sunday, October 22 at the Bolingbrook Golf Club.

The Mother Alfred Moes Award was first presented in 2008.  Mother Alfred Moes, Joliet Franciscan foundress, was a woman ahead of her time.  A pioneer and a visionary, she used her own dowry to transform her vision into service.  Mother Alfred responded not only to the needs of the people of Joliet, but wherever the need of communities across the country called her.  This award, named after Mother Alfred, recognizes individuals and organizations who also transform vision into service.

This year, the Mother Alfred Moes Award honoree is St. John the Baptist Parish.  In 1863, Mother Alfred was invited by the pastor of St. John the Baptist Parish, a parish which was only 11 years old, to come to Joliet and begin teaching the children of the predominantly German immigrant community.  All of the Sisters’ ministries, from the beginning of their history, evolved from St. John the Baptist Parish.  Throughout its 165 year history, St. John’s has responded to the changing needs of its parish family and beyond through its many programs, including a food pantry.

The Joliet Franciscan Heritage Award was established in 2010 to honor individuals and organizations that recognize the needs of their community and use their gifts of time, talent and treasure to care for those needs.  The 2017 Joliet Franciscan Heritage Award honorees are Joe and Jodie (posthumously) Adler.  The Adlers were involved with the Christian Family Movement, were founding members of the Will County Conference of Religion and Race and the Spanish Community Center.  They were active in the civil rights movement since the 1960s.  Joe and Jodie were founding members of the Will County Habitat for Humanity.

After Jodie’s death in 2014, Joe has continued to be a force for peace and justice in the Joliet area through his tireless contributions of time, talent and treasure to the many needs of the Joliet community.

For more information about the 28th Annual Franciscan Autumn Feast, please contact the Joliet Franciscan Sisters’ Mission Advancement office at 815-725-8735, x116.

Sister Martha Eckstein Retires

Sister Martha Eckstein has retired after ministering for over 50 years in the classroom.  She spent her last 15 years at Assumption Academy in Broadview Heights, located near Cleveland, Ohio.  She was honored at the schools’ last assembly for the 2016-2017 school year.  Mrs. Joanne LoPresti spoke of Sister Martha’s service to the school and said that Sister Martha had blessed them with her knowledge, grace, beauty and love of teaching. “She has been a source of inspiration, and motivation not only for her students but for her coworkers and parents as well. No matter what the challenge was, Sister faced it with dignity, compassion and kindness.”

Sr. Marlene Ambrose Recently Honored

A classroom at the University of St. Francis’ St. Clare Campus in Guardian Angel Hall, was recently dedicated in honor of Sr. Marlene Ambrose, thanks to the generosity of Mr. & Mrs. Edward Dollinger.  The recently renovated classroom contains state-of-the-art equipment which is used by the students in the Leech College of Nursing.

Ed Dollinger, a member of the Board of Trustees at USF, was Sr. Marlene’s first grade student at St. Mary Immaculate in Plainfield, IL. “She was a great teacher,” said Ed.  He wrote about Sr. Marlene in a journal he had written while he was in 8th grade.

Pictured in front of the “Marlene Ambrose classroom” are Ed and Gloria Dollinger and Sister Marlene Ambrose.

14 Sisters Celebrate Jubilee

On June 24, 2017, fourteen Joliet Franciscan Sisters celebrated their jubilee at the Cathedral of St. Raymond in Joliet.  To read more about this celebration, please click on Jubilee-2017

My Vocation Story – Sr. Karen Berry, OSF

When I came to the Joliet Franciscan community I was looking forward to being part of the joyful group I had come to know when these sisters were my teachers in elementary school. Also, because I had always wanted to be a teacher from the time I was a child, I felt that this teaching community’s charism was a good fit. Over the many years I have been a Franciscan I have learned much more about St. Francis, about ministry, and about the Church than I ever knew as a fresh high school graduate with high ideals and vocation energy. But through all these years my desire to teach has never waned, and my love for this Spirit-filled, musically gifted, multi-talented, forward-looking, warm-hearted, quick-to-laugh community of sisters has only grown.

Times have changed since the early 1960’s when I entered my community. The post Vatican II Church blossomed and called for renewal from religious congregations. Responding to new needs, Joliet Franciscans expanded their ministries to embrace the spirit of our foundress in her outreach to those who most needed her in her lifetime. Not many of us are working in schools anymore. Feeling born to teach, however, I have pursued new ways to do that through religious education for families and adults and through writing about Scripture and prayer. I am passionate about helping people understand the reasons for the changes they have experienced in the Catholic Church and equally passionate about helping Catholics to learn about other religions so that peace can come from understanding.

I look to Jesus and to St. Francis as the peacemakers who gave me shining examples of loving our enemies, loving all of creation, bridging divides and embracing those whom others reject. I look to my community of Franciscan women who are also shining examples of Gospel living. I look to myself to stay in touch with the sense of vocation and mission that first inspired me those many years ago.

 

 

The Call – By Marianne Saieg, OSF