Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I'm Dreaming of a White New Year!

If you look real close, you can see the tumbleweeds stacked up like a snowdrift in the corner (left picture). On the right picture, see the horse trailer full of them! Maybe we'll get some real snow soon!

We pray that the Blessed Mother bless you in this new year! May she protect you under her mantle! We will remember you all in our Holy Hour tonight on New Years' Eve!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!
This is what our chapel looks like right now. It's so exciting to see it take shape, and now it's even more fun as the painting is next!
Christmas was great again this year! It's always great having all the Sisters home from the schools. We enjoy being together so much!
God bless you all!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas and a Blessed One Too!

Praying that you all have a very Merry Christmas!

Lord, enlighten the darkness of my heart,
Give me right faith, fervent hope, and perfect charity.
Lord, give me insight and wisdom,
so that I may know your Holy and True Will.

(a prayer of St. Francis)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

School Sisters FUN-Raiser & Advent Gala

Wow! We are very happy how our first FUN Raiser turned out! The gym was packed with people. One of the best things about it was watching everyone else have fun -- there were lots of people there who knew each other, enjoying each other's company, etc.

As Advent is getting close to the end, please take time to be with God this week. Pray about what God is asking you to do now, invite Him into your heart even more than ever.

God bless you all! We're praying for you!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

No Control

This pic is from the Catholic High School retreat....

I (Sr. Mary Michael on the left) put all that on over my habit and veil! We did a skit called "No Control" demonstrating what a person looks like that has no self-mastery. It was fun! I was the mom with no control . . . . I had 2 cell phones (one for texting and one for talking), an ipod in an ear, no time to cook supper for the kids, etc.

Pictured with me are 2 members of my retreat team! They did a GREAT job!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Montessori in a Regular Classroom

I know this is hard to see, but this is a student in one of the Catholic Schools we work in. He is in a "regular" classroom, but his teacher, Sr. Mary Magdalene, is trained in Montessori. So she can use some of the techniques in the Kingergarten. She says it's very successful in helping develop their skills.
Pray for all of the students in our Catholic Schools, especially for the Middle School retreat this week.
God bless!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

RCYC - Rock Band

Amarillo just hosted the RCYC a few days ago. Here is Father and Sister playing at one of the vendors! It was a good conference with about 1600 teens from Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Our Sisters have worked in St. Ann's Nursing Catholic Nursing Home since it opened in the 1960's. Here Sr. Celine is walking with a resident that has MS and needs assistance walking for exercise.

St. Ann's is in need of a new building.

We hope you had a very good Thanksgiving! We have SO much to be thankful for!!! God bless you all!

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Holy Trinity -- Eternal Exchange of Love

The Holy Trinity has become more and more part of our spirituality the more we study the Theology of the Body. Since we are made in the image of God (God is 3 in 1), then we are invited by God to be a part of His Eternal Exchange of Love! And since we are God's children, and we are all a part of the Body of Christ, then we are called to be intimately in love with God and with each other. Each person has EQUAL DIGNITY. Each person is just as important as the next. Each person has eternal worth and value, and deserves our attention, our love, and our works of mercy!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Theology of the Body

Love Rocks!

You know, On Oct. 17 I posted about the "1st Words of Christ". I can't believe it's already been a month since that post!

Since we were made in the Divine Image, we are called to image God in our bodies! We are invited by God, and with His grace, to show others what God looks like.

Lord, help us to be a holy image of you. Help us to be Love. Help us to have real love in our hearts, not just what looks like love in our actions. Give us hearts like yours so that your love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, self-control, generosity (Galatians 5:22) shines through to everyone around us.

God bless you all! More on this in another post....

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Teaching -- a Great Gift to Have!

Today's Gospel was about the talents . . . .

You know, teaching is a very valuable and special gift. We are blessed to have some very talented teachers. Some are great in a classroom. Some are great at Youth Ministry. Some are great at the Sunday School classes they teach. Some are great examples of goodness and kindness (they do not have a "teaching" job, they are assigned to something else).

First, I'd like to pause for a moment and thank God for the gifts He's given us in our awesome Community! Thank you, Lord, for how you have used us over the years to bring your love and truth to SO many people (for almost 300 years now!). May you continue to use us for Your Glory!

For those of you who are not in our Community, we thank God for your gifts and talents too! No gift is too small. All gifts are to be used to build up the Kingdom of God. If you are a mother or father, remember how important it is for you to teach your children the ways of God. Remember how important it is for you to spend time with your children, to be a good example for them, to love them no matter what, to pray for them, and the list goes on. Little eyes are watching you -- no matter who you are, you are a teacher!

God bless you all! You are in our prayers. Pray for us too!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Chapel Renovation -- Stained Glass is an Art

It's kind of hard to see, but notice the bottom right-hand glass is out. This is a photo of Spencer Glass repairing our stained glass. Each piece that is broken is being replaced, and all of the lead on the outside is being shined up. After this, each window will be sealed to keep the weather out of the chapel!

Monday, November 10, 2008

School Sisters FUN Raiser and Advent Gala!

This Mercedes Smart Car is the First Prize in our Advent FUN Raiser and Gala! It's been quite a conversation piece. You wouldn't believe how spacious the front (there are no backseats) seats are! We're selling tickets fast, so if you want one, check out this website:

I have to tell you, we are mourning over the election. We trust in God that whatever happens to our country, He will take care of us. How heartbroken, though, we are about the announcements that Obama plans to use his executive powers to promote embryonic stem cell research! He doesn't have time, I guess, to go through Congress.... If you want to know more about Stem Cell research, read this:

God bless you all! United in prayer, The Sisters

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

All Souls' Day, etc

I meant to write about all Souls' Day on All Souls' Day, but time slipped me by! It is a custom in our Community to go to the cemetery every year on this day (Nov. 2) to pray for and remember each and every Sister that is buried in our cemetery. We pray for them and tell stories about what we remember about them.
Eternal Rest grant unto them O Lord! May they rest in peace!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Hallow's Eve and All Saints Day!

Sr. Mary Jude dressed up as a Red M&M at St. Ann's Nursing Home where she works part-time. She enjoys entertaining the residents!

Election Prayers

We're joining everyone as we pray pray pray for the upcoming election! Vote Pro-Life!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Join us as we pray for the upcoming election!

40 Days for Life! Pray and fast to end abortion!

I heard on the radio the other day that a doctor in California was sued because he wouldn't go against his conscience to do something. The California Supreme Court ruled against him! In other words, this could lead to the state forcing a doctor to perform an abortion even if it's against his/her conscience, or he/she would risk losing his/her license! What is this country coming to?

Let us pray and stand on the faith that God is with us through all of this mess!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Mary, pray for us!

Sr. Celine pictured here with one of the residents from St. Ann's Catholic Nursing Home (right next door to us) where Sister works. They are visiting our beautiful rosary garden!

Mary, pray for us and our nation!!! Pray for the protection of the unborn!!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Chapel Renovation!

The Chapel Renovation is underway! If you or someone you know would like to buy a pew, a stained glass window, or contribute toward the overall cost, just let us know! Here is a link to the page explaining the project:

If you want to pay for a window, we will be posting the names of each window shortly!

Monday, October 20, 2008

FUN Raiser Tickets for Sale!

The tickets are on sale for our Reverse Raffle. $100 tickets for the Dec. 13 drawing of the Mercedes Smart Car or $10,000 Visa Card! For tickets, call us at 806-537-3182, ext. 21.

God bless you all! Pray hard for the election coming up! VOTE PRO-LIFE!

Friday, October 17, 2008

The 1st Words of Christ (TOB)

In the TOB (Theology of the Body), Pope John Paul II refers to what he calls, "The First Words of Christ". They're not literally Jesus' 1st words, they are the 1st words in Pope JP's reflection.

It's from Matthew 19 when the pharisees asked, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?" Jesus said several things after that question, but we focus first on this, "In the beginning, it was not so."

"In the beginning" -- Wow, Jesus is inviting us to look back at the "beginning", before the fall of Adam and Eve, to see why we were created and how. Gen. 1: "Let us make man in our image."

"Male and female we will make them"! In the Diving Image we will make them! (this is not an exact quote)

God made us IN HIS IMAGE! We are called to reflect God (in our lives) in the ETERNAL EXCHANGE OF LOVE of the Holy Trinity!

More on this soon.....

We were created male and female!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Radio -- a Great Way to Evangelize!

This is Stephanie Frausto and I (Sr. M.M.) on St. Valentine's Radio a few days ago! The radio is such a great way to evangelize....

To listen to Steph and I, go to St. Valentine's and click on it:

To listen to us on EWTN Radio with Barbara McGuigan, click here:

God bless you!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Thank you Fr. Peter!

Fr. Peter and his dad stopped in for Mass the other day! It was awesome having our old friend with us again.

Pray especially for Fr. Peter's little brother who was killed in a car accident recently.

God bless you all!

Friday, October 10, 2008

School Sisters FUN Raiser and Advent Gala!

We have been working hard to plan our first annual FUN Raiser.
We'd love to have your presence! God bless you!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

UD -- Love Rocks!

Love Rocks -- Even (Especially) for Priests and Religious!

We traveled recently to University of Dallas to talk at the Dinner and Discourse night about love and the celibate vocations. We threw in a lot of Theology of the Body. We really enjoyed meeting everyone there! God bless you all!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

St. Faustina's Feast today!

Today is St. Faustina's Feast Day! She is very important to most of us in our Community. Her Diary has made a huge impact on us. We not only have a devotion to the Divine Mercy, we also love the lessons that can be learned from her Diary. It's full of wisdom!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Happy Feast of St. Francis!!!

HAPPY Feast of St. Francis!!! He is a great example of someone who has embodied this intimate relationship with the Holy Trinity and with the people of God (the Body of Christ).

St. Francis, pray for us! God bless all Franciscans and Dominicans today in a special way!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Love Rocks -- Even (Especially) for Priests and Religious!

You know, love is such a big thing. We all long for it. We all want it and want to give it.

Someone told me recently that . . . well, they were explaining vocations. They said that all people are called to marriage. Many are called to marriage to a human. The two are hopefully longing for intimacy with God together.

Some are called to marriage and intimacy in a special way with God.

This has become a huge interest of ours -- helping people understand this concept. We all long to share in the Eternal Exchange of Love with the Holy Trinity.

More on this in the next posts. . . . In the meantime, receive God's powerful and passionate love for you!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

2 Things

First of all, you can now download our radio program with Barbara McGuigan:

Secondly, we are about to Renovate our chapel. It should begin around October 13. If you would like to have your name in our chapel, please consider giving a donation toward the new pews, the windows, or toward the overall cost!

We are SO excited! Pray for us as we take on this new endeavor. . . .

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Congratulations to Sr. Mary Jude!!!

Sr. Mary Jude renewed her vows for one year yesterday! She is so excited and so are we!

Congratulations Sr. Mary Jude! May God grant you the grace of peace and perseverance!

We love you!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Renewal of Vows

Dear Friends,

Please pray for Sr. Mary Jude as she renews her vows for one year today!

Thank you!!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Pews for Free!

We are about to renovate our chapel. If anyone would like to have one of our pews (mostly those that live nearby), it'll be first come first serve. We have 14 total and 6 are already claimed.

We'd love to give them first to people that have been our friends over the years!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fr. Matt -- May He Rest in Peace!

Dear Friends,

Our longtime friend, pastor, and chaplain (since 1967) has died. Fr. Matt died yesterday morning in his room.
Please pray for him! Thank you.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Love Rocks -- Even for Priests and Sisters!

On Tues. evening we'll be at the University of Dallas Campus Ministry talking about the Theology of the Body and how it relates to Relgious and priests! Pray for us!

I'm writing this from Dallas.... when I get home I'll post more pics.......

God bless you all!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Did you hear? We'll be on the RADIO!

In case you haven't heard, we'll be on EWTN Radio tomorrow (Saturday)!!!

2-4 p.m. Eastern Time -- it's called "The Good Fight" with Barbara McGuigan. She focuses on saints and how they have influenced people's lives.

We'll talk about St. Faustina, vocations, our Community, Theology of the Body, etc. etc.

You can call in to the live show. Pray for us and for God's Will to be done on this show!

Monday, September 15, 2008

What's Happening with Us?

We have so many things going right now, where do we start?

I know, many of you think that Sisters have nothing to do all day but pray. We wish that were true! We have a nice schedule that we get to pray with (the Divine Office, Mass, rosary, Adoration, meditation, etc.); however, the rest of the day is full! Here are some things we're spending our time on right now:
  • Chapel Renovation -- We Want Your Name in our Chapel!
    We are about to begin a huge renovation of our chapel. Click Here to read more! We would love for you to be a part of it. We're accepting donations to buy pews, fix windows, help pay for the nitty gritty part (like a new ceiling), or even to help pay for our new beautiful murals!
  • Radio -- We're going to be on the Radio!
    We are so excited to be on the EWTN "The Good Fight" radio show with Barbara McGuigan (1-3 p.m. Central Time). It might be this Saturday. We're waiting to hear for sure. We'll talk about St. Maria Faustina and her influence in our Religious Lives. We'll also talk about the TOB and how that works with Religious Life. Awesome stuff!
  • Theology of the Body
    We are teaching more and more about this topic every day. We'll be on the local St. Valentine's Radio soon to talk about Katrina Zeno's "Turning the Titanic: Chastity Formation from Toddlers to Teens". She does such a great job explaining how to begin teaching chastity at a young age.

    We will also begin teaching a "Introduction to the Theology of the Body" in our Diocese. We're hoping to get parents from the local Catholic Schools (and anyone else interested) to come! Since their children are learning it in school, they might as well help teach it at home..... :>
  • School Sisters FUN-Raiser!
    December 13 at St. Thomas Church in Amarillo. Details will follow as we work them out....... Mark your calendar! (we will be selling tickets that can be bought out-of-state)
  • Shall I continue? (and these are the things between the other things, like teaching in Catholic Schools, teaching Religion Classes in parishes, doing the normal work around the house, etc.)

    Prayers -- this is an amazing time as people continue to beg us for prayers . . . for loved ones that have died, loved ones that are ill, marriage problems, etc. Help us to pray for all of these wonderful people!
  • Newsletters
    If you do not receive our snail-mail newsletter or our E-newsletter, sign up on our webpage!
  • UD
    We will be at the University of Dallas at their Campus Ministry program next week talking about the Theology of the Body and Religious Life. Pray for us!
  • Comments on the Blog -- is it broken? Just checking....

God bless you all! We pray for you daily! Pray for us as we strive every day to do God's Holy Will! May you all be filled with joy and peace and love!

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Holy Name of Mary - Today's Feast Day!

Today, September 12th -- The Feast of the Holy Name of Mary
This Feast is celebrated every year in our Community. Every Sister has Mary in her name one way or another. She is our model and our advocate.

After the siege of Vienna and the glorious victory of Sobieskl over the Turks (12 Sept., 1683), the feast was extended to the universal Church by Innocent XI (taken from

May Mary intercede for you all! May Mary pray for us our country (and for the next election)!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Sr. Valentina's 90th Birthday!

Sr. Valentina was born in Austria in 1918. She entered the convent there at the age of 17 (73 years in the convent)!!! She came to America at a young age and became a nurse. She worked many years in the Catholic Children's Home here in Panhandle (among other things).

Today is her 90th birthday! Happy Birthday, Sister! We love you!!!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

It's All for Love!

It's All for LOVE!
by Sr. Mary Michael Huseman, OSF

Side Note: This is an article from our newsletter some time ago. We thought it'd be appropriate with Sr. M. Irina's picture after taking Final Vows (she's the 2nd one in the procession).

God bless you Sister! May God be glorified through your life!

To be called by God to the Religious Life or the priesthood is an awesome call of love!
Ah, love! Our hearts are always longing for it. Young people (and others) are searching for the one that will love them the rest of their lives. I certainly did.
Some people mistakenly think that people only go to join the Religious Life or the priesthood because they could not find a husband or wife. After all, why would anyone subject themselves to a life without love? What a mistake! What a major misunderstanding!
Love is precisely the reason for one to follow God's call! If a person has a vocation to the consecrated life, then God is calling that person to an intimate love relationship with Him.
This is not some inexperienced person writing who does not know what she is talking about. I felt that call. After some time of denial (hey, I'm human), I finally gave in to God's irresistible LOVE! Every day gets better. Every day I begin to understand and to experience this love more and more.
As Pope John Paul II said, Religious Life, in the continuation of Baptism, "displays within the Church this wonderful spousal union which God wants to establish within us and which is the sign of the age to come." (cf. John Paul II Speaks to Religious, Vol. 6, 1989-1990, No. 367).
Be not afraid. Whatever it is that God is calling you to, no matter what state of life that is, be not afraid! God gives us the grace to do His Will and to do it with peace, love, and joy! We have to take a step of faith in the right direction, and watch God's grace take over! It's awesome. He will not let us down!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Final Vows in Vienna

Sr. M. Irina made her Final Vows in Vienna on August 24th! Congratulations Sister!!!

(she's the one that has her back turned to the camera)

We'll hopefully get a better picture of her soon.

God bless you all!

Monday, September 1, 2008

120 Years of Religious Consecration!

This is one of the photos that I promised! (from left) Sr. M. Antonella celebrated her 50th Jubilee; Sr. M. Martina celebrated her 70th Jubilee; Sr. M. Petronilla celebrated with them as the Superior General.
(a photo to come -- final vows)

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Today is "Community Day"! We are studying a book by Fr. Thomas Dubay on Deep Conversion and Deep Prayer. It's good.

This picture is from our Motherhouse in Vienna. It is a beautiful chapel!

God bless you all! We're praying for you!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Don't miss "Fireproof"!!

After attending the pre-screening for Christian Leaders last night, I can tell you - don't miss this movie. It will open in Amarillo on September 26. The film is beautifully done and has some wonderful Theology of the Body overtones. If you have any relationship in your life that means a lot to you or any that you want to make better, head to the theater and take notes. We are being issued a challenge - "The Love Dare". I believe it is one worth taking.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Correction: Movie is called "Fireproof - Never Leave Your Partner Behind"

"Firewall" is an incorrect name for the movie, but be sure and put "Fireproof" on your calendar for the September 26 national release if you miss the free pre-screening.

Monday, August 25, 2008


"Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry." (James 1:19)

There's a new Christian movie about to be released nationwide in theaters called "Firewall - Never Leave Your Partner Behind". Those of you who know any firefighters or anything about firefighters will recognize that term as part and parcel of the honor code of the profession. This movie, which is the next project of the amazing team who gave us "Facing the Giants", is indeed about a firefighter, but it focuses on his deteriorating relationship with his wife. This union seems headed toward divorce until something called The Love Dare challenges the husband to take a new look at his marriage through God's eyes as revealed in Scripture. Many of us are planning to attend a special pre-screening for Christian leaders this week. I have a feeling that the movie, aimed at covenant marriage and its real possibilities, may be targeting not just married couples...but relationships of all kinds that matter. Will let you know after seeing the movie if my hunch is right!

Happy Feast of St. Monica!

This picture was taken before 2 of them went off to begin the school year at St. Anthony's! God is so good!

Today is the Feast of St. Monica -- St. Augustine's mother. She prayed for his conversion for many years. Many mothers are inspired by her to pray for their own children and not to give up hope!

God bless you all!

Today is the Feast of St. Louis, King of France!

St. Louis (Louis IX) is one of the patrons of the Third Order of St. Francis (St. Elizabeth of Hungary is the other). He lived between 1214-1270 and knew St. Dominic and St. Bonaventure! He was a holy king that founded hospitals, churches, and promoted learning among those that lived in his kingdom. He had 11 children. He considered God's laws as higher than his own laws.

Our Community is Third Order, so he is one of our patrons!

Have a great day! May St. Louis be an inspiration to us! Pray for us!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Final Vows & Jubilees!

Yea! Yesterday, in Vienna (our Motherhouse), Sr. M. Martina celebrated her 70th Jubilee while Sr. M. Antonella celebrated her 50th Jubliee!

Today Sr. M. Irina is professing her Final Vows! Congratulations to our dear Sisters across the ocean!!!

Hopefully I'll have pictures soon to post.

God bless you all! You're in our prayers!

Friday, August 22, 2008

School Begins this Week!

School is beginning in our local Catholic Schools! We're so excited to begin a new school year -- bringing people closer to Christ every day! Pray for our apostolates!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Mission Trip, cont.

Der Friede seit mit euch! (writing from Vienna)
Peace be with you all!

OK - I believe we are on Day V:

Day V - So, on this day we traveled to three different churches. . .each one had a very special meaning for me. First of all, this was the 11th anniversary of my Profession of Vows, and so it was bound to be a special day! First, we went to a church in a small village, where we had lunch and met a small group of people. There was really a great "small town" feeling about this place. Everyone was very friendly, and the meal was really like a small potluck dinner that you might find in the US, except of course, it was all Chinese food. What really impressed me about this church was that they were rebuilding the actual church building, and so I couldn't help but think of St. Francis who was instructed by our Lord who said, "Go and rebuild my Church, which you see is falling into ruin."

Then we ventured on to an ancient village where we actually got to have Mass. I was so thankful that I could have Mass on this day, because it was the anniversary of my Profession, but what I did not know was that this Mass would be spied on. The Mass itself was just beautiful, as we sang in Italian and English. The Church itself was very simple, and I got to, again, read the english Gospel and help with Holy Communion. After Communion I thanked the Lord SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much that I could celebrate this anniversary in China, of all places!

From this ancient village, which was very beautiful, by the way, we traveled on to our last destination, which turned out to be the most exciting. This was a state church in Wenzhoe City. The minute we arrived, I knew that something was different, because it seemed that this church really had a lot of money. The others I had been in were more simple. Then we walked in and I felt like I had suddenly walked into Las Vegas. The church itself had all the elements of a Catholic Church building (a tabernacle, a statue of Mary, stations of the cross), but everything seemed to artificial and superficial. The dominant feature was a huge red neon cross in the very front. We were warmly greeted by an overenthusiastic man, whose mannerisms matched the neon lights that were in front of us. When asked what the red cross meant he answered thus, "It is a reminder to us that we are happy people, that we love our country, and that we worship our God. . ." and then he quicky added, "and your God." I think we all knew at that moment that we were smack in the middle of a state run church, and could certainly feel the difference. He invited us then for an evening meal.

On the way out of the church, I was quietly told that there were government officials all over the place watching us, and that I should spread the word that we say nothing about our purpose in China. And so the word spread throughout our group, and before we sat down to eat the group had been informed. As I walked into the place where we were to eat, the man who greeted our group in the church stood at the entrance and said to me in English, "Welcome, Sister." I admit, I was a bit taken back by this, because he certainly wasn't supposed to know this, but I just cooly walked through the door, and wished him a good evening.

And so our group had our gathering with a group of young people that night, but we were not allowed to really do anything religious. What we did, though, was have a great time, and witness to Jesus Christ with JOY in our hearts. I think it might have been one of the most beautiful evenings of all.

I will admit that I was very glad to leave that place, and as we prayed a rosary on the way home, a truck ahead of us had a blow-out in the tunnel, and so it sounded like a bomb going off. I think we all just about lost our Chinese noodles about then. . .but then had a good laugh, as we realized it was just the truck ahead of us, and all was well.

Yes, the Lord was certainly holding us up on that day. . .and what a way to celebrate my profession of vows.

Day 6 will come later. . .

Peace be to you all!

Sr. Mary Paul

Monday, August 18, 2008

Sr. Mary Paul's Mission Trip to CHINA

Sr. Mary Paul traveled with a mission group from Franciscan University of Steubenville to China very recently. Here are some of her thoughts:

Peace be with you all!

Day II - Orientation and pilgrimage to Our Lady of Sheshan. At the end of that day, we met with a group of young Chinese Catholics at a church in downtown Shanghai. We simply had a time of worship together, which led into a question-answer time, and then we ended with prayer. I have to admit I was suffering about that time from massive jet lag, and so I didn't have the energy I would have like to have had. . .but you know what? The Holy Spirit showed up anyway, in spite of our lagging spirits. It was a beautiful time of prayer, and I believed that we were all blessed.

Day III - We visited the river front which goes through downtown Shanghai. Downtown Shanghai is massive - makes New York City look like a village. The buildings are so modern - in fact, we saw what is supposedly the tallest building in the world. We were only able to spend about 45 minutes at this place, because we were then on our way to Wenzhoe (pronounced Win-Joe). So, back on the bus for another 7 ´hour bus trip. The bus trip was beautiful. We got into a more mountainous area, and crossed the longest suspension bridge in the world. It was just completed a couple of months ago, and it really quite impressive. It was really neat to watch the Chinese who were with us on the bus. Most of them had never been outside of Beijing, and so they were seeing these wonderful things for the first time as well. They were so proud and excited about the bridge. I guess the most memorable part of this journey was stopping at a rest stop to pick up some snacks. The place where we were to eat lunch was not opened, and so we just picked up some snacks. It was hilarious watching our group, because noone really new exactly what we were buying. I would say in the end that we came out pretty well. I myself was pleased with "Chinese poptarts" that I discovered. They were slightly sweet crackers with raisins backed into them. Sort of tasted like Pop-tarts, and so they were forever dubbed.

Day IV - This day was spectacular. We drove for 2 1-2 hours to a beach that was south of Wenzhoe. We drove along the coast and there had brilliant scenery. I think between all of us we took about 500 pictures. It was amazing to see the way that the people lived, especially those who lived along the sea, and to see the mountain tombs that could be seen all along. I felt like I was in a National Geographic magazine. It was so beautiful. Of course, along the way, we were praying with one another and simply getting to know each other better. Some weren't feeling to good as a result of the sharp winding roads and our vicious but excellent bus driver. So, we got to the beach in time for lunch and then began our beach ministry. We met about 200 Chinese youth who would be with us the rest of the day.. We spent our time on the because just hanging out and playing games together. We had volleyball, soccar, and frisbee tournaments. I was in charge of the volleyball tournaments, and a Chinese man came to help me with translations.. I later discovered that he was a spy. I didn't know that. I just ordered him around - "Tell them I said this!" "Tell them I said that!" OK - so I was a bit worried after realizing that he was a spy sent to check on our group. We had a great time on the beach, and I can say that I have been in the water on that beach. It was really dirty.

At the end of that day we went to a beautiful church in Wenzhoe where we shared an evening meal with our new Chinese friends, and then we had a program very much like the one we had in Shanghai. It was really a great experience. We sang and prayed together, and at the end of the evening, I ended up praying with a group of Sisters. That was a great experience.

Day V - This was one of the most exciting days. . .but you will have to wait til later to hear about it!

Sr. Mary Paul

Saturday, August 16, 2008

We Really Do Work & Pray . . .

Dear Friends,

This picture was requested by our friends at Chick-fil-A in Amarillo.

We really do work and pray -- we just like to have fun on the side! (so far the pictures we've shown are not of us working or praying)

Right now there is a lot of working, especially those getting ready for the first day of school. We strive to pray constantly.

Yesterday was the Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary! What a great feast to celebrate! Mary is an awesome model for us -- we too someday (if we die in the state of grace) will have our glorified bodies, living in ecstacy with God for all eternity! She is also a model of someone who was so full of God's grace, that she lived the vocation that we all strive for -- holiness of life. There's not enough room here to go into this all...

May Mary our mother intercede for us! Pray for us who have recourse to you!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Real Life

(picture on left) Sr. Claire Marie is having a little fun with our horse.

There are so many things happening!

  • -We are about to send out our first e-newsletter. If you'd like to receive it, please go to our homepage and sign up through the box on the left bottom. ttp://

  • -Sr. Mary Paul made it back safely from the China mission trip! She is now in Vienna for about 2 weeks (we wait for her to post here about her trip). She will be there for the Final Vows of Sr. M. Irina. She will also be there for the Jubilees of Sr. M. Martina and Sr. M. Antonella! Congratulations!

  • -We are praying very hard for many intentions -- family members and friends that are ill and all their intentions... Benefactors and their intentions... For ladies who are discerning their call in life... Help us pray for all those who have asked for and need our prayers. Thank you!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


You asked for pictures from our vacation. We have a
friend that lets us borrow their cabin in the mountains.
We caught 8 fish. I (Sr. M.M.) mostly caught tree branches,
twigs, leaves, and logs.

We had a nice restful time!

It was AMAZING being this close to Pope Benedict! He's so full of love and peace and joy!

I kept remembering, however, that we get to receive Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament every day. This is a million times better than seeing the pope in person! We get to RECEIVE Jesus into our hearts and souls! God is AWESOME!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Back to School!

The Sisters are preparing to leave Panhandle now for the "missions". The Sisters assigned to the Catholic Schools temporarily move to the parish convent to get ready for school to begin. It's exciting and sad at the same time. Exciting because they are beginning a new school year and can touch so many young minds and hearts (and get touched back). It's a little sad because we enjoy them at home so much! They come home as often as possible -- usually every 2 weeks or so....

Help us pray for our apostolates. May God bless them and keep them. May the Holy Spirit use us all for His Glory and to further His Kingdom!

We'll post pictures asap. God bless you all!

Sr. Mary Michael

Friday, August 1, 2008

Community Vacation

It's strange starting out a blog with a vacation, but it's that time of the year! 5 of us will leave tomorrow morning for a "community vacation". That means that some of us will go together to a place to have some rest and recreation! So, don't be surprised if we do not post much in the next week.

I hope you enjoy all the pictures on our website, etc. from World Youth Day and other places. Pray for us as we pray for all of you! God bless you!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

The School Sisters of St. Francis - What's Going on in Our Lives

Hello all! Welcome to The School Sisters of St. Francis Blog!

After realizing that many family members and friends are interested in what is happening with us on a regular basis, we decided to begin a blog. We will try to update it periodically!

We have many exciting things going on:
  • In June we were blessed with the visit of our Mother General from Austria, Mother M. Petronilla. She was here to receive the new postulant and novices. She also celebrated Sr. Mary Frances' 50th Jubilee with us, as well as received the first vows and renewal of vows. Exciting two-days!
  • Sisters have been going on their home visits to see family and friends.
  • Sr. Mary Michael and Sr. Rose Marie were able to go to Sydney, Australia to help volunteer at World Youth Day. That was an awesome experience. There's something special about being with the pope and with all the people from around the world -- praying together, loving God together, singing together. . . .
  • We're about to begin a major renovation of our chapel. It needs to be insulated, the stained glass windows need repaired and insulated, and many other things.

We have some very special prayer intentions. We have many friends and family members who are asking for prayers for health issues. We also have a special missionary intention that will be posted after it is over. Please keep all of our intentions in your prayers!

God bless you all!