She's in her 30s ‒ only 1 percent of women religious are. And she's an elementary school teacher. Fewer than 2,000 women religious ‒ 2 percent of all sisters ‒ teach in U.S. Catholic grade schools. Yet she said she's joyfully where she needs to be and is not discouraged by the few number women choosing religious life. "I wouldn't necessarily say there's a drop in vocations as much as there is a drop in the 'yes' ‒ you know, the response to the call," she told Catholic News Service during a recent interview at St. Peter Indian Mission School in Bapchule. "I think God is calling and calling and calling."
Notes from the Field - In my initial explorations of San Francisco after arriving here in August, one of the first unfamiliar things that struck me was the large and ubiquitous presence of the city’s homeless population.
"Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit. To each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. All the members of the body, though they are many, are one body. You are Christ’s body, and individually members of it."Read more
An oral history project at St. Catherine University is an unique first-person archive that documents, in an academically rigorous way, the intersection of housing insecurity and higher education, an experience far more common than it may seem. It was developed by Louise Edwards-Simpson, a history professor at the university, with the help of Sr. Amata Miller, a member of Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Notre Dame Sr. Thecla Tran Thi Giong, who earned a doctoral degree in counseling and psychotherapy from the Philippines in 1993, has taught at universities and in inter-congregational theological formation programs for men and women religious for more than 20 years in Vietnam. Giong is among the first Catholic nuns who were allowed to study abroad in the late 1980s after the country was reunified under communist rule in 1975 when the war ended.
Since 2001, more than 2,000 women have not only found safety but learned skills at St. Monica's Vocational School in Gulu, Uganda, directed by Sr. Rosemary Nyirumbe. In her words: "They are fighting back with needles and sewing machines and not with machine guns."
While some conservative politicians criticized Pope Francis for his encyclical on the environment, saying science should be left to scientists, Franciscan Sr. Ilia Delio has long lived at the intersection of science and spirituality. She praised the encyclical, calling it “remarkable.”
Released last week, the encyclical "Laudato Si', on Care for our Common Home" by Pope Francis is a forceful and integrated teaching on environmentalism. Global Sisters Report interviewed a number of sisters and academics around the world who have long worked on environmental issues, and overwhelmingly, they talked about feeling excited, optimistic and also grateful. They also were realistic. They know setbacks and frustrations are ahead. But the clear language of the encyclical leaves no room for doubt: The world is in peril, human beings are the cause, and we can also be the solution.
Moira McQueen, a theology professor and a fan of St. Thomas Aquinas, views her appointment into a prestigious Catholic commission as cumulative of her faith and decisions made throughout her life. “I find that it is only possible to be humble before his incredible gifts of reasoning, insight and faith,” said McQueen of the 13th-century theologian and philosopher.
GSR Today - It took a radical notion about serving the marginalized to encourage Sr. Eileen Reilly to accept a job at the United Nations.
Notes from the Field - When I applied to be a VIDES volunteer, living in community with the sisters was a strategic move. One, I wanted to be living in a safe environment; I trusted that a community of nuns would be able to provide that. Two, I wanted to grow in my faith. Three, I particularly like structure and order, which life in community promises.
From A Nun's Life podcasts - Why would God give me two different vocations at the same time if they're not compatible?
GSR Today - The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today 5-4 that same-sex marriage is constitutional and that states must recognize such marriages performed in other states. National Catholic Reporter has reaction from Catholic bishops and others here.