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Sharing the joy Page 1. Convention in Victoria. Connections 2007 Gathering Page 6. News Briefs. IW Associates

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2007 C.C.V.I. VOCATIONAL YEAR Sharing the joy Page 1 Convention in Victoria Page 2 Connections 2007 Gathering Page 6 July/August 2007 Living Incarnational Spirituality in Ministry: Sister Michele O Brien,
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2007 C.C.V.I. VOCATIONAL YEAR Sharing the joy Page 1 Convention in Victoria Page 2 Connections 2007 Gathering Page 6 July/August 2007 Living Incarnational Spirituality in Ministry: Sister Michele O Brien, MSN, RN. Page 3 The word advocacy means to be the voice for one who cannot speak for themselves. Visit us at News Briefs Page 12 IW Associates Page 14 U.S. Province News - Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word Sharing the joy By Sister Susan Santos, C.C.V.I. About our Newsletter: Sister Elizabeth Riebschlaeger Editor/Communication Liason Bianca Mendez, Communication Specialist/ Newsletter Production Contact Information: U.S. Provincialate 3200 McCullough P.O. Box San Antonio, TX In one of Mother Pierre s letters dated May 3, 1883 she writes, Joy is a fruit of the Spirit and a need of the heart. This describes my heart that is full of joy and gratitude as I begin my novitiate. On August 15, I was received into the Congregation of the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word as a novice. This ceremony was prayer-filled and the reception afterwards was a wonderful celebration complete with coffee and lots of baked sweets from my family in New Orleans and from my gracious CCVI sisters. Christina Santos mother of Sr. Susan Santos I would like to extend my deepest appreciation to all my family, friends and my Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word for helping make this evening prayerful and festive and with thanks also to all the Sisters who attended this celebration. You have my gratitude for your spirit of love and welcoming embrace. Thank you for your written cards, prayers, gifts and warm thoughts extended to me. I feel all your support and I know I can continue to count on your prayers as I journey in formation as a novice with the Congregation. I continue to have a village of support from the Congregation! Especially at this time, A a special thanks to the Sisters from the Dubuis NOW community (Sisters Vicky Carmona, Catalina Fresquez, Alice Holden, Joan Moran and Chris Stavinoha) for their hospitality and care during my pre-novitiate phase of formation. My deepest appreciation to Sisters Martha Ann Kirk, Eleanor Geever, Bette Bluhm, and Cindy Stacy for giving of themselves and taking time to walk with me during my period of pre-novitiate. I am also grateful to Sisters Mary Teresa Phelan, Corine Walsh, and Frances and Agnes Maloney who have agreed to journey with me in my continued process of formation as a Novice. (210) (800) Fax: (210) Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word / July - August 2007 US Province News Convention in Victoria By Sister Louise Delisi, C.C.V.I. Sisters Geri Eveler, Consuelo Urrutia, Milded Warminski, Josetta Eveler, Grace Omeasa (hidden on the right of Josetta) The Sixth National Incarnate Word Reunion was hosted by the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament Sisters and Associates in Victoria at their beautiful Motherhouse the weekend of July At 1:00 p.m. on Friday, 12 of our Sisters set out in two cars and a van. Sr. Geri Eveler drove Srs. Josetta Eveler, Consuelo Urrutia and Mildred Warminski and Grace O Meara. Sr. Elizabeth Riebschlaeger was the driver for Srs. Margaret Carew, Norma Rosa Garcia and Louise Delisi. Our Associate, Adela Gott, drove her van with Sisters Philomena Birmingham, Alice Holden, Grace O Meara and Maureen Wilson. Sr. Helena was there to send us off with a promise that she would join us the next day in Victoria. Sr. Eilish Ryan also drove up the next day. Associate, Mary Welch, drove from Corpus and was accompanied by Dale Roper an Associate in formation. Despite the torrential downpour which accompanied us most of the way, we arrived safely in time for Mass which began at 5 p.m., celebrated by Bishop DiNardo of Houston. Bishop DiNardo is a dynamic speaker. He used the theme of the Convention as the basis for his meaningful homily. The theme of the Convention was Called to be Mystics and Prophets in the Church Today. Sr. Mary Clare Underbrink, IWBS, a full-time doctoral student at a University in Lyons, France, gave two presentations on this topic based on the spirituality of Venerable Jeanne de Matel. The prophet proclaims God s word. The mystic experiences God within. How can one proclaim what one has not experienced within? If one has truly experienced God within, how can one not proclaim it? Sr. Clare stressed the age-old dilemma of the importance of having a balance of contemplation and action (being Mystics and Prophets) in our daily life. Striving for a balance creates a tension in our endeavors. Sr. Clare encouraged us to live in the tension. We can live the tension as a dance or as a battle. We have a choice of how to participate in the tension. Sr. Mary Clare s thesis will be based on the writings of Jeanne de Matel. Each presentation was followed by small- group sharing which I found helpful and delightful. Sr. Clare also allowed for questions and comments after each of her presentations and I personally believe that her message was clarified by our own Sr. Elizabeth Riebschlaeger when she offered the following insight: Mysticism is to prophetic life what oil is to fire wind is to the sail, the river is to the acequia, the plant is to the flower, breath is to the heartbeat, Love is to life. Bishop David E. Fellhauer of Victoria also spoke of a need for a proper balance of prayer and action during his homily at the Sunday liturgy when speaking on the Gospel of the day, the story of Martha and Mary. Other Congregations represented at the convention were the SIW Sisters from Cleveland, IWBS Sisters from Corpus Christi, CVI Sisters from Houston, CCVI Houston, totaling about 125 Sisters including the IWBS Sisters of Victoria. There were also about 75 Associates present. see page 12 2 U.S. Province News - Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word Living Incarnational Spirituality in Ministry As a part of the Newsletter series on Sisters in varying forms of ministries, we are happy to share an interview with Sr. Michele O Brien, MSN, RN who serves as Director of Adult Advocacy and Public Policy as CHRISTUS Santa Rosa health Care in San Antonio, TX. Thanks to Sr. Michele for Sr. Michele O Brien taking time to share with us. Where are your family roots and how did Q. you first hear about the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word? I was born and lived in Dallas, Texas, the A. second of 5 children. Being a part of the Catholic parish family and faith were values we lived in our family. I attended our Catholic grade school, high school and college. From an early age I remember my parents being concerned with issues of social justice, like caring for the poor, orphanages, and sharing what we had with others. My father was involved as an usher and getting others involved to meet the needs of the parish and its school. My mother expressed this in seeing that the orphanages, both run by our Sisters, had enough food for the children and the Sisters who were there. She also worried about children having a safe place to live. Our home was always open. Most of your religious life has been spent Q. in healthcare ministry. Please tell us about your various ministry assignments in healthcare. In 1965, immediately after first vows I was A. assigned to Santa Rosa to finish my degree in Radiologic Technology. It was an immediate fit as the hospital was expanding and health care was becoming more available to many with Medicare beginning. New technologies were advancing the care for patients especially in cardiac medicine with heart catheterization. I was sent to Amarillo to open the 3 heart catheterization lab and a new cancer radiation unit. The call came that we needed nurses especially in our rural hospitals, so I asked to switch fields. Twenty months later I completed a BS in Nursing at Marillac College in St. Louis. I worked in Incarnate Word Hospital on weekends and holidays as a student nurse. I spent the summer following nursing graduation in Normandy as the nurse in our infirmary with our older Sisters while waiting to take my State Boards in Nursing. Then it was on to Paris, TX to be the OB and Medical Surgical Supervisor. I delivered my first baby there when the doctor didn t make it on time. As a rural hospital we were often without enough nurses so we did many double shifts and filled in as necessary. I was interim Director of Nurses for a time. Three years later as my liver disease was advancing I moved to St. Louis to be near the hospital doing research in this area. I worked at Incarnate Word Hospital for five years as Supervisor of the Emergency Room. It was a wonderful experience working with many great nurses and a Medical Director who loved to teach all of us. Then I took the position of Administrator of Normandy, the Regional House. The St. Louis Provincial and Council no longer lived in Normandy. It was very exciting time as we moved to working with other Religious Orders and our Incarnate Word Academy on such things as sharing retreats, purchasing, maintenance, and other programs. After three years I felt the need to return to health care and followed a dream to make a difference through assisting the poor find health care in the community. At the same time the Archdiocese of St. Louis was looking at how to assist people who were unable to get health care because of lack of access or affordability. I interviewed and was hired as the Director of the Catholic Health Outreach Program (CHOP). For the next seven years I worked to do healthcare in parishes after Masses on Sunday with doctors from St. Louis University s Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC) We assisted pregnant women in receiving prenatal care, and children in receiving healthcare and nutrition for a great start in life. We also helped with clinic start-ups Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word / July - August 2007 in church basements and various other healthcare ministries like AIDS. Two became federally funded clinics and exist to this day, still serving the poor. We expanded programs, which resulted in a city-county wide health collaborative with all sixteen Catholic Hospitals and others whose mission was to contribute to creating a community of healthy citizens. We also began a Parish Nurse Program with other interfaith groups. No doubt you have experienced many changes in the Catholic Healthcare Ministry over Q. your years of service. What are some of the more significant ones? I think the most significant changes have A. been seeing this ministry move from a service to the community where everyone was cared for to one that involves mostly only those who can afford it. Healthcare has become a commodity for sale. The advent of the Diagnosis Related Group (DRG) with a limited number of days and reimbursement for an illness, instead of having the focus on the patient and what they need, was so new to all of us in healthcare. It did help us to focus on being more efficient in how we organized care plans but it was difficult to think of patients and families as a diagnosis rather than a person with a diagnosis. The technology exploded and we were challenged to keep up as medical professionals and at the same time, to make things understandable to our patients. Computers became commonplace in recording our work and helping us. Integration of new medicines, diagnostic tools, and as well as reporting mechanisms were very challenging. We were very focused on diagnosis and treatment and only a little notice was given to prevention and patients understanding of the procedures and equipment. Not until the late1980 s did hospitals regroup into very large hospital systems. Reporting our Social Accountability and developing a way to do so to the community became the front-stage concern for hospitals. US Province News There are many concerns in Catholic Healthcare today. What two or three are clos- Q. est to your heart in caring for the sick today? I think the biggest concern closest to my A. heart is the training of nurses with great skills and big hearts to care for the sick who are the most vulnerable and poor. Seeing them care about giving the kind of care that I would want my mother and family to receive is my biggest concern. We hear a lot about advocacy today. What exactly is advocacy, and how does one go about ad- Q. vocacy as a ministry today? Who can be an advocate? The word advocacy means to be the voice A. for one who cannot speak for themselves. I think that advocacy means knowing the issues, speaking up because one knows what the subject is about and being able to dialogue with key persons about it. That means not just as I perceive it myself, but as the person in need is experiencing it. Anyone who knows and is willing to learn about the issue and be for another can be an advocate. It is the willingness to learn and to speak that is required to be an advocate. Congratulations on receiving the Lifetime of Q. Faith and Service Award from the Archdiocese of San Antonio at the recent Catholic Charities Banquet on May 10, What are your thoughts on receiving this award? Receiving the Catholic Charities Lifetime of A. Faith and Service Award is a wonderful surprise. Its very title includes the values that I treasure most in my ministry. As you reflect on the choices you have made over Q. the years in your life, how do you see them in 2007? I am blessed by God with the gift of life to this A. day. I am grateful that I have the blessings of family, Congregation, vocation and ministry and so many wonderful people who bless me with examples of love, faith and service. 4 U.S. Province News - Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word Fr. John Linskens Passes Away F r. John Linskens, retired from his long scholarly association with the Pastoral Institute at Incarnate Word College, now the University of the Incarnate Word, and the Mexican American Cultural Center, passed away in his native country on Wednesday, March 9, His brilliant mastery of hermeneutics and the interpretation of Sacred Scripture impacted the Faith formation of literally hundreds of priests, deacon candidates, religious men and women, lay catechists and lay Catholics not in any particular ministry, but with simply a hunger for a greater knowledge and experience of God s Word. For the last few of his 88 years, having suffered the loss of his eyesight due to a long bout with diabetes, he lived in the Missionhurst retirement center in Vught, Holland. On February 2 of same year, he had observed the 60th Anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. There was much to celebrate and for which to be thankful in his distinguished life as a priest and biblical scholar. In his early teaching career, he was professor of Scripture in Nijmegen and Leuven. In 1959 he began his professorship at San Carlos Seminary in the Philippines. He later taught at the East Asian Pastoral Institute at the Jesuit Ateneo University in Manila, where Fr. Virgil Elizondo had studied as a young priest during his term as Director of Catechetics for the Archdiocese of San Antonio. At the time, Fr. Virgil had been appointed as Director by the late Archbishop Robert E. Lucey, himself a noted voice for social justice among the bishops of the US. Fr. Linskens, a member of the Claretian Order, and his Jesuit colleagues in Manila Frs. Alphonse Nebreda and Jose Pepe Calle, along with Benedictines Frs. 5 Fr. John Linskens nephew, Leo Linskens co-authored by Sister Elizabeth Riebschlaeger and Sister Eilish Ryan Juan Alfaro and Pasqual Otazu would all eventually be invited to teach at the two Pastoral Institutes founded by Fr. Virgil Elizondo on Assumption Seminary grounds (known as the Mexican-American Cultural Center) and at Incarnate Word College. Fr. Linskens was associated with the Pastoral Institute at Incarnate Word from 1967 to During those years, his brilliant teaching opened especially the Lukan writings and the Pauline letters in luminous ways to students, transforming their lives, both personal and ministerial. Fr. Linskens appreciated the culture of San Antonio, and was especially fond of any fiesta that was being held. He was also a great fan of the circus, and tried not miss any that came to San Antonio. In reporting his death, Fr. Linskens nephew Leo Linskens wrote, Although poor health led him to return permanently to the Netherlands in 1996, his heart remained in San Antonio. On July 18, Fr. Elizondo hosted a special Liturgy and Mexican dinner at MACC in memory of Fr. Linskens. During the Mass and afterwards, numerous former students and colleagues at both MACC and UIW gave testimony to the powerful influence Fr. Linskens had had on their lives and ministries. Indeed, the heart, mind and spirit of this dedicated lover of the Word and brilliant teacher won many minds and hearts to the real Jesus of the Scriptures. His incisive intellect, wisdom, understanding of the Scriptures, love of social justice, his presence and his joy of life will be truly missed in San Antonio and the world. May God grant the Church many more like him in the years to come, who will lead God s people in continuing to break the Bread of the Word for many, speak out for the oppressed, and nourish those who hunger for the Word, freeing their spirits to embrace the Vision of the Kingdom of God on earth. Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word / July - August 2007 US Province News Connections 2007 Gathering By Sisters Alice Holden & Sister Rose Mary Forck The stage is set and volunteers ready with focus clear. Attendees are welcomed greeting friends Hello Dollies sung with hugs galore for all are welcomed. 6 U.S. Province News - Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word and danced with help. A role play leads to first stories sharing. The sharing continues with time out for photo shots S. Helena shares today s reality with more table sharing and time for laughs. Brings happy travelers 7 gathering for Memory Lane behind the swimming pool to the Blue Hole Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word / July - August 2007 US Province News Memorial Garden Dubuis House rises Old shoe room transformed. New Texans in Archives. All return for collation and a pause that refreshes Cinderella skit stupefies Friends chat or pose for pictures. Group shares stories that cause laughter sharing past memories 8 U.S. Province News - Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word and more poses for happy memories in future days Silent witnesses. The Word gathers entering the future to Incarnate the Word 9 Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word / July - August 2007 It s a Matter of Justice By Pat Kerwin, Director of Spirituality in Ministry We have heard and used that phrase so many times with regard to many issues. Truly, people of faith intend to do the right thing in relations with others. The application of copyright law to the use of intellectual property or creative works calls us to be attentive to the way we use music from a variety of sources in our liturgies. Too often, a well intentioned person might think, It s only one copy or ten... or thirty. We really need them for this prayer service funeral... school liturgy. It won t hurt anyone if we just make a few copies; I have the hymnal right here. Violation of copyright law through the illegal reproduction of music is a form of theft. That may seem like a strong statement, but it is true. A copyright is an intellectual property that belongs to a copyright holder. Only the copyright holder or administrator of the copyright has the legal right to use the work, or to allow someone else to do so. A person wishing to use copyrighted material must secure permission from the copyright holder or the administrator of the copyright. Denise Gannon, in an article entitled If you Want to Sing about Justice, Live Justly [Pastoral Music, Aug.-Sept. 2003] reminds us that copyright abuse affects living people and not just a company whose name appears on a piece of music. Artists depend on the royalties they receive for the use of their music to pay for rent and elect
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