Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Mother Teresa Award

Last night I attended a dinner sponsored by Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Evansville, Indiana. This dinner was part of the recognition given to recipients of their Mother Teresa Service Awards. These awards are presented to those who daily live the qualities of Mother Teresa: willingness to hear Jesus' words; to listen to them; then respond to them.

From left to right:

  • Sister Joan Scheller was recognized as an incoming board member to Catholic Charities.

  • Sister Joanna Trainer received the Mother Teresa Award.

  • Sister Leta Zeller was recognized as an outgoing board member to Catholic Charities.

  • Sister Beata Mehling received the Mother Teresa Award.

Sister Joan Scheller is the associate director of the Guadalupe Center for the Diocese of Evansville. She works with Hispanics throughout the diocese.

Sister Joanna founded the House of Bread and Peace in Evansville, which is a place of temporary housing for woman and children.

Sister Leta Zeller is the pastoral associate of Saint Francis Xavier parish in Poseyville.

Sister Beata runs a home for special need adults in Jasper. She teaches them life skills and social skills and helps get them involved in their parish.

More pictures from the Mother Teresa Awards

Sister Joanna and Sister Beata
compare awards.

Sister Joan congratulates Sister Joanna.

Sister Joanna receives her award
from Bishop Gettelfinger.

Sister Beata receives her award
from Bishop Gettelfinger.

Sister Leta receives a thank you
plaque for serving on the board.

Sister Beata and Sister Mary Rose
with some residents of the Dove House.

Sister Mary Agnes and Sister Joanna:
Sister Mary Agnes lived at the House
of Bread and Peace for 11 years while
working at St. Benedict Parish.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

This is a great video that you can customize and send to your mom. It's really worth checking out. I nominated my mom for Mother of the Year. You can do it too.

Mother of the Year Video

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Evansville Serra Club Bowling Party

Every year the Serra Club in Evansville holds a bowling party for the sisters in the diocese. We had a great night of bowling, pizza, cookies and ice cream. They also had wonderful door prizes for everyone! We are so lucky to have such a supportive Serra Club! Thank you!!!

Sister Mary Cheryl getting ready to let one fly!

Sister Jill Marie had a great time bowling! Can you tell? :))

Sister Catherine Marie, Teresa, and I got at least a few strikes and spares between us!

Oh, those goofy shoes!!!

This is the granddaughter of Marty, the Serra Club member who is the main organizer of the bowling party. Thanks Marty! You're the best!!! This young little Benedictine is trying on a medal to see how it looks. :)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

What a week!

We had last Friday off of school, so I went to Atlanta for the long weekend to spend time with my brother, niece, and nephew. I had so much fun hanging out with them and playing ball outside. They give me such joy and peace! Then, I got back to school on Monday and started on a week of wonderful adventures with teaching kids about the Rosary, planning a May procession and crowning, getting graduation stuff together, playing a leadership ceremony, Baccalaureate, and other really good things like that! This weekend, I am at the monastery taking a workshop on Teresa of Avila. So, it has been a very full and blessed week! God has been in every moment and I am so glad!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

A Balanced Life

St. Benedict wrote in his rule to live a balanced life. So, you don't come to the monastery to pray all day. Instead, Benedict encourages all to live a balanced life of prayer, work, study, and leisure.

This probably isn't the kind of balance that Benedict had in mind, but my mom has a sign in the kitchen that reads, "A balanced diet is a cookie in each hand." I like that kind of balance. Some people find balance by ordering a Big Mac and a Diet Coke. That works too.

Recently I took a trip down memory lane and thought of balance. I grew up in a small town, so the closest mall to us was about 35 - 40 minutes away. My mom, brother, and I always celebrated when we were there by sharing a big cookie and a large Diet Coke. It was a great tradition. My mom usually managed to get a cookie crumb or two and possibly a sip of soda. My brother and I got the rest.

I went to the mall a few days ago and bought my balanced snack of a large cookie and a medium Diet Coke. I don't even want to mention how much that cost. It was the memory I was reliving, so it really didn't matter.

My mom always encouraged us to have fun and enjoy what we were doing. Sometimes that may mean splurging a little bit. It may mean buying a big cookie at the mall no matter how outlandish the price. It may mean taking time for yourself and doing what you enjoy. This time will only come around once, so take advantage of it. Live it to its fullest. I believe that is when we will have balance in our lives. Go out. Be kind to yourself. Take the time you need to live a balanced life of prayer, work, study, and leisure.

If you feel your life is becoming a little off balance, try the more concrete approach - have a cookie in each hand and enjoy.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

6th Grade Field Trip

The 6th grade students at my school recently enjoyed a trip to our monastery. It was a whirlwind of a day. While there, they received a tour, ate lunch, sang folk songs with the sisters, and heard the trumpet, timpani, and organ being played. The best part for me was having the students and sisters interact. The only bad part was that we couldn't stay longer. The students and sisters had a great time.

Monday, May 4, 2009

First Monastic Profession -- May 2, 2009

See novices, Sister Doris Schepers and Sister Gail Hamilton make their first monastic profession (video below). Sister Doris and Sister Gail entered our monastery two and a half years ago as postulants. During their first eight months as postulants, they lived with the community, took classes, and participated in the life. After this period, they entered the novitiate, during which they continued the process of incorporation into this community and continued discerning their call. During this time they also continued to study the Rule of Benedict, our Constitutions, the essentials of Benedictine profession, and the traditions of this community. During their second-year novitiate, they were given additional time to discern their call to monastic life and the opportunity to begin part-time ministry. Now that they have made their First Profession, they will integrate even more fully into the community and begin full time ministry.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Derby Day

Today was a great day for our community because novices, Sister Doris and Sister Gail made their First Monastic Profession. I will post a video (hopefully) of the ceremony later.

Because of the Profession we had a slightly different schedule today. We ate supper at 5 p.m. then had a little free time before Vespers and Profession at 7 p.m. Many of the sisters, myself included, took the opportunity of that free time to watch the Kentucky Derby. Lucky for us it was perfect timing! There were 12 us watching and rooting for various horses to win for one reason or another. I was hoping General Quarters would win because his owner/trainer/hotwalker/groom was a 75 year old retired principal and teacher. It would have been a neat story but it was not to be.

Of course, as always, for me watching the big race took me back to my pre-monastery days when I worked with racehorses on the track. Gosh, that seems like a lifetime ago, and in many ways it was a lifetime ago.

Anyway, here are some pictures of us watching the Kentucky Derby.

Sisters Barbara Jean, Mary Carmen & Agnes watching the post parade!

Sisters Kathy and Mary Carmel rooting for their pick!

Sister Barbara Jean REALLY rooting as they come down the final stretch! I think she thought she was really riding the horse! :)