Heritage Week Celebrated at CSJ Institutions

St. Joseph's Academy and Fontbonne University in St. Louis Celebrate Presence of Sisters of St. Joseph with Heritage Week Events

by Sister Maryellen Tierney

The weeks of March 12 and 19 were CSJ Heritage Weeks at both CSJ-sponsored St. Joseph's Academy and Fontbonne University. The staff at both of these CSJ sponsored institutions went out of their way to celebrate the presence of the Sisters of St. Joseph and the contributions our sisters have made not only in founding these educational institutions but in keeping the mission and the spirit of the CSJs alive.

Fontbonne's Rocking with the Sisters featuring Sisters Marianne Keena and Pat Quinn.

Sister Linda Markway, Fontbonne’s Director of Mission Stewardship, planned several events to which the Sisters of St. Joseph and associates were invited the week of March 12. Once again there was an opportunity for students, faculty and staff to interact with the CSJs who took part in “Rocking with the Sisters.” Sister Roseanne Cook was the guest speaker at “Our Sisters—Our Heritage and Dr. Brian Matz, CSJ Chair for Theological Thought, spoke about Sister Agnes Gonzaga Ryan and Sister Mary Agnes Rossiter, the Fontbonne founding Sisters of St. Joseph. One of the special events was Mass on Wednesday at which Sister Suzanne Giblin gave the homily. Lunch followed in the Ryan Hall dining room.

St. Joseph's Academy students present the CSJ jubilarians with hydrangeas.

Anna Hotop, St. Joseph's Academy’s campus minister, and her student assistants planned events throughout the week of March 19 to include as many Sisters of St. Joseph and associates as possible. At the beginning of Mass on Monday one of the students read a quote from Maya Angelou which was “We are who we are because they were who they were.” This was a reference to the many Sisters of St. Joseph who served as teachers and/or administrators since the founding of the school.

After the homily, the sisters and associates turned to face the students and renew their vows/commitment and sang Sancte Joseph. Those who were invited to assist at the Mass were Sisters Janet Kuciejczyk, second reader; Pat Dunphy and Santa Cudihee, petitions; and Linda Straub and Maryellen Tierney, presentation of the gifts.

Following Mass there was a student-produced video featuring Sisters Linda Markway, Lisa Lazio, Linda Straub and Maryellen Tierney. The purpose of the video was for the sisters to tell the students their connection to St. Joseph's Academy and why they became a Sister of St. Joseph.  The three 60-year jubilarians, Mary Carol Anth, Helen Ryan and Maryellen Tierney were presented with beautiful hydrangea plants. A reception attended by sisters, associates, faculty and staff followed the Mass.

On Friday, March 23 the sisters were invited to the Academy for coffee and donuts from 7:15 to 8:00 a.m. This was another opportunity for the sisters to interact with the administration, faculty and staff and to thank them for all that they continue to do throughout the year to keep the CSJ spirit alive at St. Joseph's Academy.


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