Franciscan Sisters Host Visitors at St. Louis Convent

Franciscan Sister Sue Ann Hall shares news from Our Lady of Guadalupe Convent, St. Louis, Missouri.

Sister Sue Ann Hall and Sister Delores Vogt housed four delightful, spiritual, happy, and outgoing young women from an organization called Created Equal who met and talked with students at Washington University and St. Louis University about abortion. They displayed rather graphic posters by Planned Parenthood the two mornings before going to the Universities. Three young men with their group stayed elsewhere.

On October 13, while Sister Anne Marie Lom and Sister Julie Ann Sheahan were in Belleville, Illinois, Sister Delores and Sister Sue Ann went with the Cathedral Women’s Group to the Shrine of St. Rose Philippine Duchesne in St. Charles, Missouri. St. Rose is one of three patron saints of the Archdiocese. The other two are St. Louis of France and St. Vincent De Paul. St. Rose’s remains are in a sarcophagus in the Chapel dedicated to her honor. Like many who came to help in America they were poor and found their way into the hearts of the people they served.
Philippine’s last name, Duchesne, means “of oak”, and a fitting name who remained faithful through her trials and struggles. There are schools all over our country which she established. Unfortunately we did not meet any of the Sisters from the order.

St. Francis Convent Celebrates 30 Year Anniversary

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity celebrate the thirty year anniversary of St. Francis Convent. Thirty four of the thirty seven Sisters missioned to St. Francis Convent for the 2018-2019 year are present in the photo below.

Manitowoc, Wisconsin—It was thirty years ago this past July 5th and 6th that Sisters first moved into the newly constructed St. Francis Convent. The Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity Community periodical entitled the Sampling Vol. 17, No.1, states: “Though the acquisition of San Damiano Convent [Slinger, Wisconsin—1985] temporarily eased the retirement problem, it soon became apparent that Ozanam Home in New Berlin was in need of major repairs. Considering the distance of this facility from the Motherhouse, the great expense involved in renovation, and the inadequacy of space in the future, the Administration began considering the alternatives of building a new retirement home for the Sisters. After once again consulting the community members, Sister Ritarose [Stahl] and her council decided in 1986 to put Ozanam up for sale and to build a 52-bed residential home for our retired Sisters on the Motherhouse property. . . . .Since the General Chapter in 1983 had mandated the establishment of a House of Prayer for the use of community members one wing of the new structure was designed to serve this purpose.”
According to the Community’s  Monthly Memo, October, 1988: The Convent was dedicated and blessed on the feast of St. Francis, October 4, 1988 by the bishop of Green Bay, Most Reverend Adam Maida. “In his homily, Bishop Maida complimented the Community for the living proof of stability and respect for life that our leaders provided for our retired Sisters.”

Catholic School Girls Visit Convent

In the recent days Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity received guests from St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School, Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Middle school girls arrived first at the Franciscan Music Center of Silver Lake College of the Holy Family, Manitowoc, Wisconsin.

After the college tour and the opportunity to meet a former student from St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School now attending Silver Lake, the group met Postulant Hilda and Sister Julie Ann Sheahan at the art entrance. We walked a short trek to Holy Family Convent, our Motherhouse.

After arriving at the front door we climbed the stairs to the second floor to St. Al’s, short for St. Aloysius, the place where our postulants live as they take the first step in becoming a Sister. (Our convent tends to call some rooms by saint names.) In this setting, Postulant Hilda introduced herself and shared what happens in a normal day for her.

After  yielding questions, Hilda led the way to St. Mary’s Chapel where we all participated in a later morning Mass with more of our Sisters. The group joined the Community for the noon meal after touring more of the Motherhouse before and after eating. Novices finished the visit by spending time outside with the girls before the bus arrived to take them back to Sheboygan.

Franciscan Convent Hosts Xavier Appleton Silent Retreat

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity’s home, Holy Family Convent, was visited by Xavier High School, Appleton, Wisconsin teachers Katie Wesolek and Ann McKnight and students. The Theology teachers planned a silent retreat for a few junior and senior girls. All arrived later afternoon Friday and departed about the same time on Saturday.

Near the end of the retreat, a few Franciscan Sisters served on a panel with the retreatants. Represented were Sister Catherine Gilles, a former principal of Xavier, Sister Katherine Warning, former student of the school and Sister Mary Teresa, a current Novice teaching at Roncalli High School, Manitowoc, Wisconsin. Students were free to ask their own questions of the panelists.

Franciscan Sisters Called to Reflect on Cross

 As Saint Francis of Assisi had special devotion to the mysteries of the Incarnation, the Eucharist and the Cross, so too, do Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity reflect this Holy Week on these realities. This photo from Saint Frances Cabrini Church, West Bend, Wisconsin is a moving depiction of the tremendous love of our God for us.

Fittingly, Franciscan Sister Sharon Paul and our Sisters of St. Benedict Convent, Cambridge, Ohio, received a vocation cross as a sign of a commitment to pray for vocations to the Church in a special way during Holy Week. Sister Sharon shares about what this means for the Sisters.

The parishioners at St. Benedict’s Church, Christ Our Light Parish, Cambridge, Ohio pray in a special way for Religious Vocations during the Season of Lent. Parishioners: single, married, families or Communities sign up at one of the four Masses to pray for a week for this intention. At the end of the week-end Masses, the priest celebrant has the person or persons come up to the front and receive a Vocation Cross with a booklet to use for prayer. The whole faith community joins their prayers during the week with that person or family.

One of the prayers asks: “Lord, enkindle in our communities a missionary zeal to send workers into your fields and to come and follow You.”

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity serving at St. Benedict’s, Cambridge, Ohio, offered to take the cross for Holy Week on Palm Sunday at the 8 A.M. Parish Mass and to pray in a special way for Religious Vocations.

Novice Experiences Convent Life in Nebraska

Novice Sister Cecilia Joy shares  her mission experience with our Sisters at St. Francis Convent, West Point, NE. Her eleven hour road trip with Sister Thelma Weise from West Point, Nebraska went incredibly smooth, though she “now knows what Sisters mean when they say Iowa seems to stretch on forever.” After unpacking and settling back into the Novitiate routine, she shares her reflections.

What activities did you do/ministries did you shadow while on mission?

One of my highlights was being able to shadow the Communications Coordinator at St. Francis Memorial Hospital. It was a fun day of sharing stories, viewing each other’s work, and shadowing a type of position God might be calling me to in the future.

Describe “community life” based on your experience.

A lot of cooking and laughs. I enjoyed spending time with Sister Joy Rose, Sister Barbara Mathe, and Sister Elizabeth Ann Miller.


What were some memorable moments?

It was a joy to share and listen to farming stories from Guardian Angels Central Catholic students and St. Joseph Retirement Community residents alike. I also liked sitting in on some of Sister Joy’s meetings and in-services. Oh, and who could forget the cattle auction and volunteering at the movie theater!



Finish the Sentence: My time on mission taught me_________

that I can cook. I just need to continue growing in confidence.

Anything you’d like to say to sisters and readers viewing this article?

I’m so grateful I was sent to West Point for my mission experience. I now have a better understanding of why sisters who grew up in West Point are so friendly and sociable. If you are reading this article and you/someone you know is discerning religious life, please consider visiting our sisters. The best adventure is the one Jesus sends you on.

God calls you. We invite you to one of our coming retreats, a visit at a time that works for you or Camp Franciscan. Click here.


Novice Visits Arizona Convent

Sister Clare Rose shares her reflections on a recent visit with our Sisters at Immaculate Conception Convent, Yuma, Arizona.

What activities did you do/ministries did you shadow while on mission?

I think I had a few highlights! One was going to the schools and talking to the kids. Another was being involved with the Sisters in their daily routines. I loved helping to cook and helping out in the classroom. I got to spend time with each Sister in their jobs such as teaching, working in an office, or even tutoring. Each Sister had an important job.

Describe “community life” based on your experience.

Honestly it felt like a family. We cooked (and they let me help), cleaned, went for walks, did a puzzle, and laughed a lot together. I loved every minute of all of this just being there and living as they would. I loved praying together as well. We didn’t have to go out to have a good time together.

What were some memorable moments?

Trying to figure out a crossword puzzles with Sister Alexandra, going to the three schools and playing P.E. and basketball with the kids, going to the classrooms and talking to all the students, when Sr. Hannah told her kids that I was coming back to Wisconsin and they all turned around and said “noooo”!!! I also enjoyed walking and talking with both Sr. Hannah and Sr. Janet. The day Sister Mary Beth and I decided to grill hamburgers outside it decides to rain!! (We still grilled them though!!!) When Sister Ann Mary and I tackled changing the sweeper bag and seeing both her and Sr. Janet tutoring. All the talks with Sister Charlene and going shopping with her and having some new spicy foods!

Finish the Sentence: My time on mission taught me_________

just how much we really are one big family!

Anything you’d like to say to sisters and readers viewing this article?

All the Sisters out in Yuma, Thank you!

Is God calling you? We invite you to our March 16-18 Franciscan Discernment Retreat! Click here to register!

Novice Experiences Ohio Convent

Novice Sister Colleen fortunately arrived safely from the icy snowstorms of Zanesville, Ohio after experiencing life with our Sisters at Good Samaritan Convent. Read about her visit.

What activities did you do/ministries did you shadow while on mission?

I had the opportunity to shadow with a few of the chaplains at Genesis Hospital in Zanesville, Ohio. Sister Bernadette and I visited patients and their families in the cancer center, and I was given the opportunity to sit in a session with inpatients at the behavioral health center. I attended a presentation on Pediatric Cardiac Sudden Death, presented by a Cardiologist from Ohio State University. Sister Maureen Anne took me under her wing for the new employee orientation, and I was able to interact with those that were in attendance. One afternoon, Sister Mary Ann and I assisted with families in the surgery waiting room.

Describe “community life” based on your experience.

Each sister brings her own gifts to the “community life”, some like to play cards, and read, others cook or help with chores. The sisters in Zanesville like to play Jeopardy (TV) from their chairs in the living room .The Hallmark movies were a big hit too. Prayer and Mass were a part of our day, and we all shared in the recitation of the Liturgy of the Hours. We cleaned and packed items for the eventual move to a new living space.

What were some memorable moments?

I would have to say the 15 hour car ride to Ohio definitely made the headlines. I will never forget that day of travel. While in Ohio, Sister Bernadette took me on a tour of Zanesville, where she showed me the world famous “Y” Bridge. Tom’s was a lunch stop one of the days, I had a delicious sundae and shared in good conversation, while listening to the oldies on the jukebox.

Driving up one of the hilly side streets and not knowing what is on the other side, proved to be a new experience, especially since the streets were snow covered. The overnight in Cambridge, where we encountered an intruder of the inhuman kind. Thank goodness for Sister Helen Marie!!

Finish the Sentence: My time on mission taught me_________

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity are very much a respected presence in the communities in which they serve. There are so many people in need of spiritual, emotional and socio-economic assistance.

How did you grow closer to Jesus/His call for you while on mission?

Jesus was the cancer patient, the newborn addicted to drugs, the patient seeking treatment for mental illness. I was deeply touched by those I met and appreciate the inner strength of those who face so much adversity.

Anything you’d like to say to sisters and readers viewing this article?

I have a deep appreciation for all sisters who are currently on mission or have been on a mission. Thank you for providing a non-judgmental and compassionate environment for those you have served. Thank you to Sister Bernadette, Sister Maureen Anne, and Sister Mary Ann, for serving the people of Zanesville, Ohio. Thank you for the mission experience!!

We invite you to one of our upcoming retreats or plan a visit that works for you. Click here.

Franciscan Sisters Convent Time Lapse Podcast

As summer begins, Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity Novice Sister Cecilia Joy offers a backward time lapse glimpse of spring at the Franciscan Sisters Convent on Silver Lake in NE Wisconsin.

Discerning a call to religious life?

Join us for one of our upcoming retreats. See the beauty of our surroundings on site and in person!



Eucharistic Adoration at Franciscan Convent

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity invite you to Eucharistic Adoration in our  home at Holy Family Convent, Manitowoc, WI.