Celebrating the anniversary of our founding each November, Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity share a tune created by our Sister Francis Mason. It praises God for the beauty of our Motherhouse property on shimmering Silver Lake. The song reflects on the scene that caught the eye and heart of Mother Odelia Wahl as she passed by Silver Lake in the autumn of 1871. At that time our young religious community of Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity had twice outgrown its modest living quarters. A Motherhouse had to be built. God calls.
Shortly, after our Sisters claimed this home land, the area of Manitowoc County came to be called “Alverno”. It was at Mount La Verna in the Italian Apennines, north of Assisi, near Florence that St. Francis had found a favorite place of repose and prayer. It was there that he wrote his contemplative Praise of God. “You are holy, Lord, the only God, and your deeds are wonderful…you are our haven and our hope.”
As she went on walking she pondered and planned it,
“Oh, blessed this site for our convent and land.”
With hope in God’s guidance she prayed and then bought it;
ten dollars an acre: for her daughters she bought it.
Gaze on the meadows: the woods and the lake;
Praise for her strength and the faith it would take;
to build for the future and the Sisters new home,
to build with the Lord as the true corner stone.
With faith in her heart and no coin in her pocket,
but love has such power.
no trial may block it.
The dream was treasured,
the cost never measured,
the vision grew