Sister Profile: S. Paulette Gladis

 Sister Paulette Gladis

Sister Paulette Gladis has dipped into numerous different ministries and discovered many hidden talents throughout the years.  These ministries include: education at all levels, healthcare administration, long-term care administration, director of a retreat center, province treasurer and province leadership, and, currently, pastoral care ministry at Nazareth Living Center.  And she still finds time to go to the gym three times a week!

Read more about Sister Paulette and what words of wisdom she wants to share with the world.

What was your motivation/inspiration in entering the CSJ community?
It was about the time of my sophomore year at Notre Dame High School, St. Louis, that I felt the desire to become a religious.  The question was, “Do I want to become a School Sister of Notre Dame?” like my current teachers, or “Do I want to be a Sister of St. Joseph?” like those who taught me in grade school?  Although I was very fond of the SSNDs, and respected them for their excellent teaching skills, I knew my calling was to the CSJs.  Why?  Basically, it was because of the witness they gave to me and to my classmates at Sts. Mary and Joseph Grade School—kindness, thoughtfulness, love for all without distinction, and fun!

What is your favorite ministry you have served or been involved with?
Although I have loved all of my ministries, my favorite ministry is the one in which I now am engaged—pastoral care ministry at Nazareth Living Center.  Each day provides an opportunity to bring love and support to the elderly, who often are very vulnerable.  Although my ministry includes that of giving assistance where needed, in all honesty, I receive far more than I give. The loving smiles of gratitude, the words of support and encouragement, the prayers of those at Nazareth are daily gifts. 

What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?
The best piece of advice I have received is in Robert Morneau’s book, The Color of Gratitude.  Supposedly someone asked St. John why he preached only six-word sermons:  “Sisters and brothers, love one another.”  “This short sermon eventually gets tiresome,” they said.  St. John replied, “When you have mastered my first lesson, then we can more on to a second.”  Each day, I try to master to the best of my ability St. John’s first lesson by loving my neighbor without distinction.

What gets you on your feet and out of bed on tough days when you just want to stay in bed?
My theory is that if you cannot wake up looking forward to your day, it is time to examine life and determine if it’s time for a change.

Do you have any “Aha!” moments that gave you a new perspective on the world?
I have never been to a third world country, but have experienced “Aha” moments when visiting with our sisters returning  from South America.  They are overwhelmed by our opulence and wealth.  This has motivated me to endeavor to live as simply as possible in solidarity with our dear neighbors in third world countries.

If you could address all of the people in the world, what would you say?
Please listen to and heed St. John’s six-word sermon: "Sisters and brothers, love one another."

What do you like to do in your spare time?
I love the prospect of either ministering at Nazareth, using my free time to go to the gym three times a week,  volunteering in the Archives, or reading and being with others.

Where have you traveled?
I have been fortunate to have had opportunities to travel to Europe, Canada, and Mexico.  In Europe, I stayed with family members in Germany.  With them, we visited Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and Austria.  I also visited Russia, France (including LePuy, Lyon, Dijon, and Paris), and Italy (including Florence and Rome).

What is your favorite movie or book?
My favorite book is Jesus by James Martin, S.J.  This treasure takes us to Jerusalem where we walk in the footsteps of Jesus via Martin’s pilgrimage with his friend, George, to all of the sacred places where Jesus lived and ministered while on earth.

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