Franciscan Sister’s Call includes Serving in Michigan Parishes

Sister JulieAnn Sheahan

December 29, 2018

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity Sister Natalie Binversie reflects on the life of Sister Colleen Sweeting. Here’s a snippet of her reflection. For the entire sharing, click here: Franciscan Sister Colleen Sweeting Reflection

Sister Colleen loved her years as an educator. In eleven years she taught every elementary grade except First Grade. Sister Colleen was a principal for 21 years. As the years went by, Sister Colleen’s love for Scripture and Theology deepened. She became more interested in adult faith formation and wanted to minister in a different capacity in a Parish setting. Sister Colleen was granted the permission to attend Loyola University in Chicago. In 1990 she earned a Master’s Degree in Pastoral Studies.

After her studies were completed, there was an opening for a Pastoral Administrator in DeTour, Michigan. Sister Colleen ministered for ten years in the small towns of DeTour and Drummond Island. In 1999 Bishop James Garland appointed Sister Colleen to St. Christopher’s Parish in Marquette, Michigan. This is where Sister Colleen ministered for 18 years. In an interview at the time of being missioned to St. Francis Convent for the 2017-2018 year, Sister Colleen told the U.P. Catholic reporter, “I most liked being with people in all of my assignments. I’ve liked being part of their lives, not just when they’re sick and dying, but the good parts, too. I’ve worked with people of all ages, ministering to their spiritual and physical needs. It has been a wonderful opportunity, especially to live in Marquette, a college town. I will miss the spirit of the people. I will also miss being close to the water. I love water.”

Sister Colleen enjoyed cross country skiing, camping, being outside in nature, reading, listening to music, cooking, watching Packer football games and visiting people to up-lift their spirits.

At the time of her Jubilee Sister Colleen wrote, “The Lord’s Spirit is very evident in my everyday life. I thank the Lord for the gift of my vocation and the many people I worked side by side with as teacher, principal and pastoral coordinator. I have been given so many wonderful opportunities and I am grateful for each one. All is gift and my life has been deeply enriched by all of them. St. Paul expresses it so well in his letter to the Corinthians: I give thanks to my God for the grace of God, bestowed on you in Christ Jesus, that in Him you were enriched in every way.


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