While about 90 miles away the Archdiocese of Milwaukee prepares to bid farewell to Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan, a man in the news soon to lead the Diocese of New York, the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity on February 26, 2009, welcomed Bishop David L. Ricken , Bishop of the Diocese of Green Bay, on his first visit to their Motherhouse in Manitowoc, WI. Beginning with a tour of the Franciscan Sisters’ home, Sister Louise Hembrecht, OSF, Community Director, ushered the 12th bishop of Green Bay through the historic halls, some dating back to 1879.
Bishop Ricken’s other planned activities included:
- Visits with about 80 Sisters in St. Rita’s (one wing of the building which houses an infirmary for members of the community)
- Reception with almost 100 Sisters who reside at the Motherhouse while serving the Franciscan Community in various ways or ministering other folks in near by locations i.e. leadership, formation, administrative services, health services, tutors, craftroom workers, housekeeping, culinary services, seamstresses
- Solemn Vespers in St. Mary’s Chapel
- Evening meal in the convent cafeteria
After dinner the Bishop thanked the Franciscan Sisters for their hospitality, affirmed the whole community for living their charism with an alive spirit and for their faithfulness to the community’s traditional ministries of education and health care.