Words are important in our lives. At times of significant steps along the path of Consecrated Life, words reawaken feelings and memories.  Read here Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity Community Director Sister Natalie Binversie’s reflection at the recent Rite of Initiation into Religious Life of Sister Maria Thérèse. Significant to Sister Natalie’s sharing are our new Novice’s own thoughts.

Franciscan Sister Natalie welcomes new NoviceSister Maria Thérèse, welcome to your new Community, The Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity. You received one of the names you requested, Maria after the Blessed Mother and Thérèse after St. Thérèse of Lisieux, one of your favorite saints.   Your title, “The Beloved of the Heart of Jesus” will be celebrated on the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. You are assured of our prayers for you as you begin the next step in your Formation as a Novice. Mary, the Mother of Jesus and St. Thérèse of Lisieux will be sources of inspiration and companions for you. May the symbol for your Title be a reminder of the Heart of Jesus and of His great love for you. Know that His desire is to have this love deepen and grow as your relationship with him deepens and grows. May Mary and St. Thérèse of Lisieux intercede for you.

You have been a part of our Community in the TAU Program and your time of Postulancy. As a Community we thank Sister Julie Ann, our Directress of Vocations, Sister Elaine, your Postulant Directress, Sister Florita and Sister Sarah, your Postulant Team Members for all they were for you these past months. Sister Mariadele and the Novitiate Team, Sister June and Sister Mercita, will be your new companions for guidance for your development in Religious Life and continuing your desire to learn our way of life.

Franciscan Novice with relative in the Community copyIn the letter you wrote requesting to be accepted into the Novitiate you wrote, and I quote, “I am now as sure as I have ever been that being a part of this Community and so serving God’s people is truly what He is asking me to do with my life. I am ever so happy to do this, as I desire only Jesus and His will for me. I could have never asked for more kindness, love, and support as that which has been given to me by our Sisters. I am honored and so incredibly blessed to be a part of this Community. I never could have imagined that my life would lead me along this path and although I may not have gone where I intended to go, I know I ended up where I needed to be. In my time here, I have grown as a person and learned so many new things. I have grown closer to Jesus and in my desire to give my whole life and everything I am to Him.” End of quote.

As you enter the Novitiate today, please be assured of the prayers and support of all your Sisters. In a few minutes please listen carefully to the words we will pray in your regard after the Our Father. We walk this journey of Formation with you. Always remember that God is with us every step of the way.

Prayer: God our Father, it is you who have called us. Hear our prayers and bless this Sister of ours who wishes to follow your Son in Religious Life as a Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity.  Help us to do what you ask of us so that your plans for her may be fulfilled.  We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen!

{ 0 comments }

Franciscan Novice Ready to Wake Up The World to God

by Sister Julie Ann on July 22, 2014

Anticipating a Special Year of Consecrated Life, Pope Francis is encouraging Consecrated Religious to witness to their vows and ‘Wake up the World to God!” Franciscan Novice Sister Maria Thérèse , received into the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity’s Novitiate July 22, 2014, is ready to do just that by first learning about the Third Order Rule of St. Francis and the Community’s Constitutions that she desires to live.

Franciscan Novice Wakes Up World to GodCalling Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, Rice Lake, WI home, Sister Maria Thérèse’s own vocation journey began with us in Fall 2013 as a student at Silver Lake College of the Holy Family, Manitowoc, WI. For her, the experience of living in the college residence across the street from our Motherhouse, allowed her the opportunity to interact more closely with our Sisters, complete academic requirements in areas of interest, while at the same time fulfilling needs in the application process.  January 2014 she was accepted as a postulant. Are you desiring to read a bit more about Sister’s own story of discernment? Click here. Each person’s vocation story and process of following the Lord’s will is forever unique and yet in many ways the same. Franciscan Novice title logo

At the time of  a Novice’s reception,  a special title and feast day are chosen that remain an important reflection throughout life. Sister Maria Thérèse’s  title is Beloved of the Heart of Jesus. The Feast of the Sacred Heart marks her actual feast day celebration.

Sister selected the following Scriptural passages for the afternoon Rite of Initiation into Religious Life: Song of Songs 2:8-14, 1 Peter 1:3-9 and John 17:20-26.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, Community Director Sister Natalie Binversie prayed this prayer for the new Novice followed by the sung Blessing of St. Francis:

Sister Maria Thérèse,  may the Lord of peace make you perfect and holy; and may you be kept safe and blameless, spirit, soul, and body, for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. God has called you and He will not fail you. (1 Thes. 5:23)

 

{ 0 comments }

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity count it pure joy to celebrate 50 years of God’s faithful love in the lives of our Sisters. Did you ever wonder what it was like to begin the journey to become a Franciscan Sister in 1958?

Franciscan Sisters celebrate 50 years of Consecrated LifeOne of this year’s celebrants, Sister Barbara Mathe, shares letters that she received from Sister M. Una, Vocation Director and Mother M. Agna at the time of application.  God’s invitation to follow one’s vocation is ever new and yet ever the same.

Other Franciscan Sisters who are also celebrating golden jubilees July 20, 2014, who received their own communications at the time of Sister Barbara’s letters, include: Sister Dolores Herrmann, Sister Helena Young, Sister Jane Kinate, Sister Karen Suhr, Sister Leonette Kochan, Sister Sharon Paul and Sister Sheila Kasten.

Letter #1

May 27, 1958

Dear Barbara,

We certainly are happy about your decision to join your sister in God’s holy service! How God must loveFranciscan Sister Barbara's letter from Vocation Director your family to call two girls to become His own spouses! Now, it is up to you to generously give all you have and are to Christ, so that He may use you to influence hundreds of souls for good. You will not be satisfied to love Christ ardently; but you will want to go out and teach other souls how sweet it is to love LOVE, Itself! That is the Franciscan Way of life-the life you intend to follow the rest of your life.

We welcome you, Barbara, and gladly enclose the application and medical blanks together with a letter of directions. As soon as all are ready you may return them for approval. In a very short time your sister will become a bride of Christ and I am sure you will be here for that happy occasion. You will be exceedly joyful knowing that you, too, are aspiring to that holy bridal day.

We shall keep you in our prayers! Lovingly in the Queen of May,

Sister M. Una

Vocation Director

Letter #2

Franciscan Sister Barbara on Profession DayDear Barbara,

We are pleased to learn of your sincere and earnest desire to consecrate your whole life to Jesus in our Franciscan family. Your decision shows that you realize that an invitation from Jesus is more valuable than anything the world has to offer. At the same time your willingness to answer Christ’s invitation to follow Him, regardless of the sacrifices involved, proves that you are generous.

Enclosed, are the application papers which you requested. You are to fill out the ‘Form of Application’ and the one that is to be sent to us by return mail. (If you are attending a school taught by our own Sisters you need not send this blank at once, but include it with the application papers.) The other two blanks are to be filled out by your family physician and dentist. As soon as all are completed, please send them to: the Mother General, Holy Family Convent, Manitowoc, WI. If all is in accordance with our requirements, we will send you the list of clothing and supplies you will need. Also kindly submit your Baptismal and Confirmation Certificates and a letter of recommendation from Sister Barbara letteryour Reverend Pastor with you application papers. These must be sent previous to your entrance.

With every vocation Christ grants sufficient grace to answer His call and to be faithful to the life to which He calls us. It would be well for you then to assist at Holy Mass every day and to receive the sacraments often that you may get an increase of sanctifying grace to enable you to become a loving and faithful Bride of Christ.

Entrusting your intentions to the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary, we will pray that the seed of vocation God has planted in your heart will grow and blossom into a beautiful life lived for Him and souls.

Lovingly yours in St. Francis,

Mother M. Agna

Mother General

Note: We invite you to consider our Franciscan Way of life today. Click here. We continue to promise a personal response to your inquiry.

{ 0 comments }

— 1 —St. Paul, MN

First, Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity would like to alert everyone to our coming road trip to St. Paul, MN. We are looking forward to being present at the Steubenville North Conference at St. Thomas University July 25-27, 2014. On the way to and from St. Paul, we can’t think of anything better that we would like to do than making some road-side stops to talk with you about our Franciscan Consecrated Life! We are also very open to meeting you during the conference days in St. Paul as well. Just let us know when and where.  Contact us here. Franciscan Sister road side stop

— 2 —St. Luke, Houston, TX

We take our emails seriously. After St. Luke Parish parochial vicar Father Desmond Daniels took the time to personally respond that our Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity July 5-9, 2014 visit to Houston would be published in their weekly church bulletin, Sister Carmen Marie Diaz responded that Sister Mary Ann Spanjers, Sister Julie Ann Sheahan and she would  happily stop by for the Saturday Evening Mass on July 5. And we did… after we first stopped for a rental car at the airport. Since we were in TX, ‘Alamo’ seemed quite appropriate.Franciscan Sisters rental car stop

— 3 —St. Luke Statue

How did we know we got to the right church? St. Luke was as big as life on the church grounds. A large formidable statue marks this sacred space. Franciscan Sisters visited St. Luke Parish Houston TX

— 4 —Gospel of John

As we walked closer to the church we came across some lovely plaques in a colorful garden. Leave it to Franciscans to notice the “Stations of the Light” highlighting the Gospel of John. Being St. Francis found great meaning in the San Damiano Crucifix, an icon of the Gospel of John, we paused to look at each one. Here’s a sample for you to enjoy. Franciscan Sisters reflected on Stations of Light Gospel of John

— 5 —New-ness

We were not the only ones new to the parish that night? A precious child was baptized. Father Douglas Guthrie was also welcomed as pastor. The people in the pews were quick to applaud and express their delight in all these arrivals. St. Luke pray for all of us! Sharing Franciscan Consecrated Life

— 6 —cake and punch

It is not everyday that you go somewhere for the first time and you find yourself among the group having cake and punch. But we did! We also were able to have some great conversations with some truly welcoming people! Lots of good news here!Franciscan Sisters at St. Luke Parish, Houston TX

— 7 —To be continued

Of course this stop at St. Luke’s was just the first of many pauses on our Texas sojourn that we hope to share with you in other posts on our Franciscanized World blog. Please do continue to follow us as we relive our Southern memories in the days ahead. If you desire to see us face to face at our Motherhouse in Manitowoc, WI, please contact us here. We are always ready to offer our own Franciscan hospitality! Franciscan Sisters ready to document further Houston Vocation Journey

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

{ 2 comments }

Franciscan Sister Bikes 5 States in 5 Days

July 16, 2014

Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity Sister Mary Ann Spanjers, OSF, friend of Brother Shamus J. McGrenra, TOR for 14 years, is going to aid him on his third charity ride 5 states in 5 days July 22-25, 2014. Dorothy Day Center (a place for those in need that provides food, and new or gently used clothing, furniture, […]

Read the full article →

Homily at Celebration of Franciscan Sisters Renewal of Vows

July 14, 2014

For the Eucharistic Liturgy July, 13, 2014, celebrating the renewal of vows of Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity Sister Monica and Sister Regina Rose, Assumption of the BVM Province of Friars Minor Father Placid Stroik reflected on Franciscan Consecrated Life. We share his ponderings here. Becoming a Living Word Jesus often used parables because they embodied […]

Read the full article →