IMAGE: CNS photo/Rich Kalonick, Catholic Extension
(CNS) — Dominican Sister Gabriella Williams in the Diocese of San Bernardino,
California, gives her heart and soul to her ministry with migrant field
workers, hourly laborers and their families living in trailer parks in
California’s Coachella Valley.
Rita Schonhoff, a School Sister of Notre Dame, and Dominican Sister Maria
Yelitza Ayala live out their religious vocations by serving desperately poor
communities in Missouri and Texas, respectively.
Sister Kathleen Atkinson from the Diocese of Bismarck, North Dakota, is the
founder and director of Ministry on the Margins, working with prison inmates,
former prisoners, the homeless, at-risk youth and others who need to encounter
religious sisters and many more around the United States are being highlighted
by Chicago-based Catholic Extension as part of National Catholic Sisters Week March
organization is sharing the stories of Catholic sisters who work in the U.S. mission
dioceses it supports by sharing their stories online at www.catholicextension.org/catholic-sisters-week-2016
and via social media.
the week, daily posts were to be made on Catholic Extension’s Facebook page at
facebook.com/catholicextension and on Twitter at twitter.com/cathextension
using the hashtags #NunsRock and #NCSW2016.
“Two of the most
inspirational things I’ve learned at Catholic Extension are: First, you cannot
go to the poorest places in the United States and not find the presence of the
Catholic Church,” said Father Jack Wall, the organization’s president.
“And second, the face of ministry in the poorest communities of America is
most often a woman religious.”
stories highlighted come Catholic Extension’s U.S.-Latin American Sisters
Exchange Program, an initiative that has placed 33 Latin
American women religious in dioceses throughout the U.S. to minister
to the church’s growing Hispanic population.
Catholic Extension, a national
fundraising organization, has been supporting the work and ministries of U.S.
mission dioceses since it was founded in 1905.
National Catholic Sisters Week, which
is supported by a $3.3 million grant from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation,
an annual celebration held
in conjunction with National Women’s History Month, observed in March. The
organization is based at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota.
“Created to honor women
religious, it is a series of events that instruct, enlighten and bring greater
focus to the lives of these incredible women,” says the “About”
section of the organization’s website, www.nationalcatholicsistersweek.org.
“It’s our chance to recognize all they have done for us. It’s also our
hope that as more young women learn about women religious, more will choose to
follow their example.”
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