Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity were delighted to be invited for a Fireside Chat at St. Albert the Great University Parish, Houghton, Michigan. On the trek north Postulant Mary Jane, Novices Sister Maria Guadalupe and Sister Concepcion, Sister Elena Gonzales and Sister Julie Ann Sheahan enjoyed views of picture-perfect snowy forests and winter-blue skies. The beauty of God’s country was exquisite!
On arrival in Houghton we, of course, checked out the Ice Chapel. We marveled at all the hours of construction work already done realizing that Fr. Ben Hasse and Fr. Dustin Larson and students will generously volunteer much more time before the project is finished.
After celebrating the Eucharist with a full chapel of students, all enjoyed a student-prepared meal of Friday pasta. Sister Jacqueline Spaniola, campus minister at St. Albert’s, next introduced our Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity presentation in the nearby fireplace room. Mary Jane followed explaining a bit about the Postulancy and how God called her to become a Franciscan Sister. Novices followed with stories and facts about their Novitiate experience.
Sister Elena continued the stages of formation by covering Temporary Profession and her own journey of walking with many cultures as a finally professed Sister. (She currently is at St. Peter Indian Mission, Bapchule, Arizona.) Sister Julie Ann reviewed all the possibilities of visiting our Community in the form of design your own retreat, Come and Sees, Camp Franciscan and other variety of discernment retreats now and throughout the summer.
After hanging around with the students, we headed to St. Anne Convent, Chassell for the night. The next day was a day of pilgrimage.
After Morning Prayer, we had brunch with Sister Marcelyn Gervais, Sister Carolee Vanness and Sister Jacqueline. Mary Jane’s mother and two sisters came to visit before we traveled home via a quick stop at St. Peter Cathedral to pray at the tomb of Venerable Frederick Baraga.