March 10, 2009

Sunday, we had a wonderful concert in our Motherhouse Chapel. The Faculty of St. Francis Music Center shared their talents to a chapel full of appreciative listeners in celebration of 30 years of the Music Center. The concert featured piano, organ, cello, violin, guitar and voice selections. In 1979, our Sister Cecelia Schmitt had the vision to start a School of the Arts in the former St. Francis High School building. In these past 30 years the lives of literally thousands of children and adults in the central Minnesota region have been touched by the Music Center. This is the only community school for the arts in the United States in a community of less that 20,000 population. Thank you, Sister Cecelia, thank you for having this vision and for filling our lives with music in so many ways.

March is National Women’s History Month. Let us remember the contribution of women to the health and welfare and blessings in our country. Right here on our campus, it was our Sixteen Founding Sisters who started St. Francis Convent, St. Gabriel’s Hospital, St.Otto’s Home, the Orphanage, St. Francis High School, St. Camillus Place and Alverna Apartments.

We had a special guest for lunch on Monday. She was Sister Chrispina. Sister is from Zanzibar and is well known to our Sisters Tonie Rausch and Maristell Schanen. Both Sr. Chrispina and Sr. Tonie taught in a new school begun by Bishop Shao to help youth pass exams to enter secondary schools on the mainland. The Bishop wanted Sr. Chrispina to pursue further studies so that the Cheju school would become the first Catholic Secondary School in Zanzibar. He asked our community to help him and so she has lived with our Sisters in St. Cloud while attending classes at St. Cloud State University. We are very proud of her achievements. St. Cloud State University has selected her to receive their 2009 Award for Excellence in Leadership. Not only has she excelled in her university studies, but also has excelled in outreach to the entire community, especially in regard to race relations. She has also involved women faculty members in development work for the women of Zanzibar. CONGRATULATIONS, SISTER CHRISPINA.

Sunday, March 15th, is the 11th annual Share Sunday talent show at Our Lady of Lourdes School. All funds raised will go to Oasis Share-A-Meal. The Paint-A-Thon is one of the projects that will be helped by these funds.

Today we are having a full fledged blizzard. So far we’ve gotten four or five inches of new snow with more to come through the night—with up to a foot of new snow possible.. Now the wind is picking up and bitter cold to arrive, too. All schools in the area had an early dismissal today. Seems like most things have shut down for the day. I will just stay in the house and watch the snow fly.

Oh, I almost forgot the kitchen report. The electricians are doing their thing. The plumbers are laying pipes for water and sewage, the drywall men are hanging dry wall.
All is moving along according to schedule.

Last Friday, I attended the World Day of Prayer service at First United Church. It was prepared by the women of Papua, (Indonesia). {My sister, Rita, has ministered in that part of the world for 26 years.} I could picture in my mind the events mentioned in the prayer service. The World Day of Prayer is always the first Friday of March and is prepared each year by women in a different part of the world.

Peace and all goodness.
Sister Mary Lou

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