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March 07, 2016

You've more than likely seen one around town. A blank billboard with one simple message in black type:

"We have faith in you, St. Louis.

— St. Louis Catholic Sisters."

Fifteen religious communities who are part of the group St. Louis Catholic Sisters have placed two dozen billboards with this message around the St. Louis area. The campaign, which coincides with National Catholic Sisters Week, March 8-14, is meant to instill pride in the community and a desire to work for...

October 07, 2015

The sign came at the precise moment in the mid-day outdoor Mass when Jesuit Father David Meconi elevated the consecrated host, the true presence of Jesus Christ.

A star shined above Father Meconi's raised arms, the sun reflecting in a starburst pattern off the top of the Clock Tower at St. Louis University — a hint of divine approval, perhaps, at SLU's first vocations fair in the millennium.

On a sunny but crisp and windy autumn day, 40 religious communities participated in the...

Lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org
At a vocations fair on the campus at St. Louis University, Eric Elizondo, left, had a heart-to-heart with Sister Catherine Thomas Brennan, a Dominican Sister of Mary Mother of the Eucharist, while Dominican Sister Maria Canisius Wiley talked with former classmate Amy Bolad.
March 04, 2015

Danny Ward took off his stocking cap and displayed a full head of gray hair to go with a scraggly gray beard.

"They call me the Silver Fox," he said, then chuckled.

The homeless man needed to keep his head covered on a night when the wind chill dipped below zero.

Ward, 61, a Vietnam veteran, wanted to spend the previous night at a city-run emergency cold-weather shelter but left after fights broke out among the guests. So on this night, after getting a hearty meal at Sts...

Dan Ward carried his colorful mat, woven of used plastic shopping bags, after it was given to him at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish Center in Soulard. Lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org
February 26, 2015

To celebrate the Year of Consecrated Life, religious communities in the archdiocese are opening their doors -- for young people discerning the call to religious life and for visitors to explore the religious orders living their charisms.

Next up are the Franciscan Sisters of Our Lady of Perpetual Help and the School Sisters of Notre Dame, both hosting events the weekend of March 7-8.

The Franciscan Sisters of Our Lady of Perpetual Help will have an open house Sunday, March 8,...

February 11, 2015

On a glorious Sunday afternoon in early February, three religious communities in the archdiocese welcomed visitors for the first big day of open houses celebrating the Year of Consecrated Life.

Visitors feasted not only on literal treats of cookies, punch and other goodies but also on figurative treats of charisms and history lessons of the religious orders -- in North America, in the St. Louis Italian community and in the inter-connected world circa 2015.

On this day, the...

Lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org  | Twitter: @aeternusphoto Sister Carolyn Brown, ASCJ talked with Cor Jesu junior, Angelica Brice at the Apostles of the Sacred Heart convent next to Sacred Heart Villa the Hill.  The Apostles of the Sacred Heart also operate Cor Jesu Academy, a college preparatory high school.   Celebrating the Year of Consecrated Life includes an invitation to meet religious at open houses.  The nationwide open houses included three in St. Louis with the Apostles of the Sacred Heart, Ursulines and Daughters of St. Paul opening their doors for visitors on Feb. 8.
February 04, 2015

With two religious sisters in their midst, the second-graders of Christ the King School in University City quizzed them about all things religious.

Their calling. Their prayer lives. Their charism.

But one student had an inquiry that only comes from the mouth of a child.

"Do you go to the grocery store?"

"My favorite question," Sister Marysia Weber said later, with a laugh.

Of course, religious sisters go grocery shopping -- they eat just like the rest of...

Sister Marysia Weber, RSM, director of the Office of Consecrated and Religious Life, visited students at Christ the King School in University City to pray a decade of the Rosary and let them ask all the questions they wanted to ask a nun. Lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org.
January 21, 2015

Sister Barbara Moore wanted to see "Selma," but by herself "because emotionally I knew it would probably be impactful."

So on Jan. 18, the Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet sat alone in the theater at the St. Louis Galleria and watched the movie about the events of 50 years ago this March -- the voting rights marches and protests led by Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma, Ala.

Sister Barbara experienced Selma first-hand a half century ago. A native St. Louisan and sister for nine...

November 19, 2014

Sarah Harbaugh remembers the first time she was asked the question.

As a student at Gibault Catholic High School in Waterloo, Ill., one of her teachers, a sister with the Adorers of the Blood of Christ, asked Harbaugh if she had considered religious life.

She laughed a little and said, "No."

Harbaugh, 25, has been out of high school for eight years now. Earlier this year, she ran into that sister, who told her again that she needed to think about the possibility of a...

October 30, 2014

The sweet treats at Christmas and the handmade blankets are just a few of the perks, but the lasting benefit of the Nun Buddies program at Notre Dame High School are the friendships between students and the School Sisters of Notre Dame.

The all-girls private Catholic high school initiated the program about seven years ago as a way of pairing students mainly with about 80 School Sisters of Notre Dame who live and/or work at the community's motherhouse in Lemay. The program is unusual...

October 01, 2014

On a visit to the Shrine of Knock in Ireland, Sister Rosario Delaney made up her mind to enter the convent with the Sisters of Mercy in Drogheda. She was prepared to go where God was calling her, but little did she know that it would involve moving to a little country parish thousands of miles away in Ballwin, Missouri.

Since her arrival at Holy Infant School in 1964, Sister Rosario has witnessed the booming growth of this vibrant suburban parish and school. First as a teacher for 15...

lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org  | Twitter: @aeternusphoto To the cheers of the school children, Sister Rosario Delaney was escorted into the gymnasium at Holy Infanct by Associate Pastors Father Thomas Vordtriede and Father Don Anstoetter.  A performance by the school, as a tribute to sister, included a short play of her life with a rendition  of "Haily Holy Queen" by all the teachers dressed as nuns.  Sister Rosario Delaney came from a small village in Ireland 50 years ago to teach school at a country town near St. Louis. The area is now bustling suburb and home of Holy Infant Parish and school.  They rejoice at the vibrant way sister teaches the Catholic faith.  A Mass to honor her years at the school was held in the school yard and was celebrated by many archdiocesan priests who attended her school as well at the main celebrant, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, another product of the Parish.
August 26, 2014

Down by the riverfront, the faithful gathered for a Mass at the site of the Old Cathedral, in an area to become known as the Gateway to the West.

They worshipped in a one-room log cabin, then they left on foot, on horseback or in horse-drawn buggies.

The year was 1764; the Mass was the first in newly formed Laclede Village, founded by Pierre Laclede and August Chouteau and later renamed St. Louis — for King Louis IX of France.

That first Mass, the founding of St. Louis...

August 06, 2014

Sister Annalee Faherty opened the door to the classroom and stepped inside. The children jumped up, eager to greet her and tell her about what they have been doing. Soon, she was high-fiving several of them. At the urging of their teacher, Rosemary Bourrage, the youngsters let out a loud cheer for Sister Annalee.

While the children in the child-care center at Guardian Angel Settlement Association are perhaps the most exuberant in their greetings, the adults...

Lisa Johnston | lisajohnston@archstl.org | Twitter: @aeternusphoto Sister Annalee Faherty; D.C.; has been working with the poor at Guardian Angel Settlement Association for 58 years.; Her order; the Daughters of Charity; began the association as an orphanage for young immigrant girls.; They have now evolved into an agency serving children; teens; families and older adults.; The agency's child devlopment center on N. Vandeventer Avenue takes care of children for low income parents who are either working or studying and prepares the youngsters for kindergarten matriculation through exploratory learning. She was surrounded by children celebrating their "senior week" as they are ready to graduate in a few days to kindergarten. Sister reacted when the children excitedly said she had the same eye color as they did.
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