Why Consecrated Women Religious Participated in Feminine Genius Women’s Conference

by Sister Julie Ann on February 13, 2011

With ‘woman’ being one of seven themes of basic content material in the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity’s formation program, it was very appropriate that Directresses, first year Novice and Postulants participated in the Green Bay Diocese’s 1st Annual 2011 Feminine Genius Women’s Conference. The event was held at St. Pius X Parish, Appleton, WI, the home parish of Postulant Holly Larsen.

The weekend’s program, The Dignity and Vocation of Women: yesterday, today and tomorrow, was proclaimed by genuine, feminine witnesses: Johnnette Benkovic, Jeannie Hannemann, Judith Leonard, Barbara McGuigan, Vicki Thorn and Mercedes Wilson.

It is thus my hope, dear sisters, that you will reflect carefully on what it means to speak of the “genius of women”, not only in order to be able to see in this phrase a specific part of God’s plan which needs to be accepted and appreciated, but also in order to let this genius be more fully expressed in the life of society as a whole, as well as in the life of the Church.Letter of John Paul II to Women

What are the other basic content themes important to becoming a Franciscan Sister? The areas covered in life-experience, direction, reflection, guided reading, meditation, etc. include the following:

  • Call
  • Person-Woman
  • Prayer-Liturgy
  • Ecclesial Woman
  • Community
  • Apostolate and Ministry
  • History and Tradition

6 thoughts on “Why Consecrated Women Religious Participated in Feminine Genius Women’s Conference”

  1. Sister Anne Marie Lom says:

    I am eager to hear comments from those who participated.

  2. Smaryfrances says:

    The conference was inspiring and informative. It was based on solid Catholic teaching as well as Scripture and personal experiences of the speakers. We were encouraged in our faith as well as being placed in the “mantel of our Blessed Mother”. Hearing lay women speak about their faith life as well as their struggles and how they dealt with them was heart rending and hopeful. Women have a special place in society and do we realize this? Our role is to be life givers to everyone we meet. We were challenged to learn as much as we can to promote life and to spread the word by our actions. We were also encouraged to bring everything to the Lord and Mary, especially at the cross. We cannot do anything by ourselves. We need to pray and to grow in our faith.

  3. Rereading Pope John Paul II's letter to women, my eyes focused on the opening lines of gratitude for the roles and ministries of women. It appears that this workshop tries to further that spirit of gratitude adding a missionary call to spread goodness. If anyone is desiring more thoughtful reading or listening on the topic of woman check out our Sister Renee’s articles and radio broadcasts Pope Paul VI Institute. http://www.popepaulvi.com/napr

  4. Sister Natalie says:

    A sure test of a worthwhile conference is the on-going conversation around the topics and the experiences of the presentations! This past week there were many references made to what was heard at the Women's Conference. In the talk given on “Woman, Her Call and Mission” we were reminded that God wants each of us to believe the truth about ourself. Three characteristics of a Handmaid of the Lord are: Receptivity – openness to all that God desires, Trust – graced with the Virtue, and Surrender – not passive but active to respond to grace. The Lord is looking for many women like His Mother, Mary, to be full of love and about God's mission of service. It comes with a little “yes,” followed by another “yes,” and many more invitations to say, “yes!”

  5. Sister Monica, novice says:

    I am very grateful to have been able to attend the conference. It was very affirming and I learned a lot about the dignity and role of women. It also made me feel closer to Mary. Next year's conference is the weekend of St. Patrick's Day!

  6. Sister Anne Marie Lom says:

    What a wise insight: “the on-going conversation around the topics and the experiences…” I will be using that criteria to measure some of my presentations etc. Thank you!

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