Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity Sister Pam Biehl shares on a renewal program for Sisters who have been perpetually professed for at least five years.
During the month of July Sister Mariadele Jacobs and I directed the Tertian Program for four Sisters. The Tertian Program is a time of renewal for Sisters in our Community who have been perpetually professed for at least five years. Sisters Elena Gonzales, Hannah Johnecheck, Helen Marie Paul and Pamela Catherine Peasel were part of this program which ran from June 20-July 16 and included their annual retreat.
The weekly schedule included time for both study and discussion as well as prayer, visiting, recreation and even a little cooking. There were also presentations on different aspects of religious life by a variety of speakers. Among the speakers were Sister Anne Marie Lom who shared insights about our Franciscan and Community Charisms, Fr. Dave Beaudry who shared his reflections on the Lord’s Prayer and Sister Caritas Strodthoff who gave us both a Motherhouse and a “Traveling” Heritage Tour which took us to the new St. Nazianz Historical Museum along with wanderings through Clarks Mills and Manitowoc.
We also read and discussed the book “12 Keys to Spiritual Vitality: Powerful Lessons on Living Agelessly” by Dr. Richard Johnson Ph.D. Dr Johnson is nationally recognized for his pioneering work in Spiritual Gerontology and maturing adult faith formation. He is also known for coining the term, “spiritual gerontology” to highlight the role of faith in the aging process.
On Saturdays we enjoyed a cookout and bonfire together with the Sisters who have been living at Chiara for the past year and on Sundays we went to see some interesting sights in the area. These Sunday “field trips” took us to Bookworm Gardens in Sheboygan, Whitefish Dunes State Park and Cave Point in Sturgeon Bay along with a couple of trips to the “Cow” and a bit of geocaching in Manitowoc.
The Tertian Program gave all of us an opportunity to share community life together as well as time to reflect on what it means to “grow in wisdom and grace” – even if the Tertians weren’t quite ready to think about aging yet!